Scotland’s utility ScottishPower wants to install rapid charging stations for electric cars “at strategically important locations throughout the UK”. The announcement is part of ScottishPower’s investment plan for its very own energy turnaround.
Starting this winter, ScottishPower will begin setting up a network of charging stations across the UK. The larger plan behind the initiative sees the utility spend up to £2 billion in 2019 alone. It is the company’s “biggest ever investment in the country in a single year,” states the PI and comes following the sale of ScottishPower’s thermal generation business and transition to 100% renewable energy in 2018, thus leaving coal and gas behind for good.
As part of the investment plan, ScottishPower will spend £6billion in the UK between 2018-2022 with 40% on new renewable energy generation, 42% on smarter enhanced networks and 15% on innovative services and products for customers.
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The latter includes services for electric vehicle drivers such as said charging stations. ScottishPower plans for a new public EV charging network and settles the initiative within the company’s Retail division. The new business will “install fast chargers across the UK at strategic commercial locations from winter 2019,” says the utility.
While ScottishPower has not provided any more detail on the exact number, locations or type of the charging stations, an indication is the utility’s belonging to the Iberdrola Group. The Spanish energy provider has lately invested in EV charging infrastructure, installed at Ikea stores for example, and plans to set up a total of 25,000 charging stations for EVs in Spain by 2021 reportedly.
Whether ScottishPower is looking at similar outlets for electric car charging will have to be seen later this year. The company also announced plans for a 50MW battery storage project at Whitelee, the UK’s largest onshore windfarm. The large-scale battery project will be the first of a series of storage schemes and ScottishPower believes the combination of renewable energy and flexible storage, such as provided by electric vehicles we presume, are the most cost effective low carbon solution for consumers.