In the UK, bp pulse is pledging to improve the reliability of the UK’s older public charging infrastructure by working with local authorities to upgrade and replace charge points across the country.
The BP subsidiary – that was given the new name bp pulse incorporating bp Chargemaster and Polar in 2020 – has already agreed to invest over £400,000 in infrastructure for replacing more than 50 charge points. These are mostly owned by local authorities and originally installed over a decade ago with government grant funding under the Plugged in Places scheme.
According to bp pulse, many of these early charge points were not installed with long-term sustainability in mind. The company says that the UK’s ‘legacy network’ has suffered from under-investment, observing that EV drivers are faced with charge points that are no longer usable.
Beyond the upgrading of initial 50 charge points, discussions are already underway to make an additional £750,000 available for legacy charge point owners, which could see over 300 units upgraded. In total, bp pulse has made £2 million available for the endeavour. The company says it will work closely with local authorities and other charge point owners to replace older infrastructure “as quickly as possible”.
Transport Minister Rachel Maclean said: “I’m delighted to see that steps are being taken to upgrade public EV charge points, increasing their reliability and taking us one step closer to delivering on the commitment to end the sale of new petrol and diesel cars and vans by 2030.”
Matteo de Renzi, CEO of bp pulse explained that although they remain focused on increasing the number of fast-charging possibilities in their network, the company recognises that drivers in the UK experience issues with older charge points. The aim, he said is to “significantly improve the experience of EV drivers across the country.”