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Electric Cars: Should NZ Homes Incorporate Chargers?

In mid-November the English Prime Minister announced that any new build or building undergoing major renovations is required by law to install electric vehicle charging points. This could mean that up to 145,000 homes or offices being built in England each year will need to incorporate electric vehicle charging stations. 

England is working towards reducing its carbon footprint through reducing the amount of fossil fuel vehicles on the road. In New Zealand we also have changes coming. Primarily the high carbon fee, imposed on cars with high emissions. 

However could we see the New Zealand government encouraging such a law on our building standards and requirements? Shopless explains this new English law, and what New Zealand is doing to reduce carbon emissions. 

Why has the English Government imposed this law? 

The English government has imposed this law, to speed up the process of reducing the amount of fossil-fuel vehicles. The UK has a goal of banning all new fossil-fuel vehicles by 2030. Thus, incorporating these vehicles into new homes and workplaces is to help road users adapt to the use of electric vehicles. By having charging stations at home and at the office, it is easier for individuals charging their electric vehicles regularly. Reducing costs as EV owners do not have to pay for an electric vehicle parking space to charge their car.  

The English government had proposed this law to incorporate electric chargers into new builds in 2019. Which has been widely celebrated by sustainability and climate focused organisations. 

Is New Zealand positioned to have a similar response to England?

There is no indication that the New Zealand government will adopt similar laws or the changes that have been seen in England. In June 2021 the NZ government announced a clean car initiative. This initiative focuses on making electric cars more accessible and affordable for New Zealanders. And also puts an import tax on cars with higher carbon emissions. However as we have seen in our previous blog focusing on the most popular cars in New Zealand, this change has seen an increase of high emission cars sold. With New Zealand’s most popular cars still being high emission vehicles. 

An Argus media report stated that: “New Zealand is not on track to reach its target to reduce GHG emissions by 30pc from 2005 levels by 2030 and achieve net-zero GHG emissions by 2050, according to the CCC report.” Indicating that despite efforts to reduce the carbon emissions through the imposing of car tax. There is no indication that NZ will be close to meeting the desired reduction in carbon emissions. 

However the clean car emissions scheme will only be adopted in 2022. The Ministry of Transport has predicted that this initiative will “prevent up to 9.2 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions and will help with the upfront cost of switching to an EV or low emission vehicle.” So let us hope that the ministry of transport is correct in their predictions, to encourage a cleaner, greener New Zealand. 

There has been no law change or discussion about regulating new builds or major renovations to incorporate electric vehicles. 

What is New Zealand’s Carbon Emissions goal and timeline?

New Zealand does have an ambitious carbon emissions goal. Our target is guided by the Climate Change Response (Zero Carbon) Amendment Bill, which was passed in 2019 as a framework for New Zealand’s carbon emissions target. The act aims to reduce all carbon emissions produced in NZ to a net zero by 2050. Net zero refers to the overall balance between the emission of greenhouse gasses and the greenhouse gas emissions taken out of the atmosphere. 

An article in NPR discussed New Zealand’s capability of reaching such a goal. “The country is well-positioned to hit zero. New Zealand already generates 80% of its electricity from renewables. And that portion will be higher by 2035 as offshore oil and gas are phased out. The government is shifting its fleet to electric vehicles and is working to transition other vehicles to electric, too. The government also has restarted a program subsidising home insulation. And is putting $14.5 billion over the next 10 years into transit, biking and walking infrastructure. In addition, New Zealand has already committed to planting 1 billion trees by 2028.”

Overall New Zealand is working towards building a greener future. However the results of certain initiatives such as the car taxes are still to be seen. 

New Zealand Electric Vehicle Initiatives

Many New Zealand businesses are already working towards incorporating electric vehicles into their businesses. Many retailers, supermarkets and malls have incorporated electric vehicle charging docks into their car parking spaces. Other businesses have also placed electric vehicle spaces into their staff car parking. Additionally some businesses have incorporated electric vehicles into their fleets. Including Waste Management using electric trucks for rubbish collection. And NZ post using electric courier vans. You can see a list of companies incorporating these vehicles into their business, in a stuff article here.

Overall the shift towards electric vehicles is a positive one in the UK. England is leading the way in their goal to see no new fossil fuel cars by 2030.  We hope that the current initiatives in NZ are also effective, and help to meet our 2050 zero carbon target. If you are looking to purchase a car, or sell your current car. Make sure to check out the motors section of Shopless.

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