Mer, Joju and Dorset County Council are continuing the roll out of EV charging infrastructure across Dorset, installing an additional 27 fast and rapid charging stations.
Client: Dorset Council
Geographical Area: Southwest England
In Dorset Council’s 2021 paper on Transport as part of their Climate and Ecological Emergency Strategy, transportation was estimated to produce 765 kilotons of CO2 per annum, meaning it was the single largest contributor to Dorset’s carbon footprint. The Council set goals for reducing the environmental impact of the county’s transportation, which included replacing fleet cars and small vans with battery electric vehicles (or the best ULEV alternative) within the Dorset Council fleet by 2025/26 and investigating the development of small-scale ‘park & ride’ hubs with access to electric vehicle charging points.
Fulfilling these goals required investment in EV charging infrastructure, in the hope the investment would subsequently aid the achievement of their targets of reducing their carbon budget by 71% by 2030 and becoming carbon neutral by 2040.
Dorset is also a hotspot for holiday makers. In June 2022, Dorset featured in The Times’ best UK holiday destination list. Investing in EV charging infrastructure would aid the Council’s ability meet the demand of both seasonal visitors and county residents.
In March 2021, Mer worked with installation partner Joju on Phase One of the project with Dorset Council, which saw over 40 charging units installed across 18 sites, including in Dorchester, Weymouth, and Sherborne. Mer installed 6 rapid stations, whilst the remaining installs were fast stations.
To accompany the existing infrastructure in the county, Mer is now working with Joju on the Phase Two programme, partly funded by a £125k grant from the Office for Zero Emission Vehicles (OZEV). The OZEV grant, together with funding from Dorset Council and Mer, will support the installation of an additional 19 dual fast chargers in areas currently underserved by charging infrastructure across the County.
Mer are contributing over £600,000 of funding toward the roll out of the Phase Two programme, which includes 8 new locations for rapid and ultra-rapid chargers.
Mer will also be increasing the number or power of the rapid chargers from phase 1 of the project to grow the network ahead of increasing demand.
“More coverage means tourists can relax while they’re visiting, rather than worrying about their journeys around the Jurassic Coast. We hope this will encourage more EV drivers to explore Dorset”
Councillor Ray Bryan, Portfolio Holder for Highways, Travel and Environment at Dorset Council
The enhanced development of reliable charging solutions hopes to encourage county residents to make the switch to electric vehicle transportation, whilst additionally aiding the Council in their journey towards carbon neutrality. It also ensures residents without off-street parking can access charge points in their local area.
Alex Hinchcliffe, Interim Managing Director at Mer UK – Public charging said, “Sustainable, future-fit solutions are what local authorities need. We’re working with several councils like Dorset to ensure they provide the right charging stations for EV drivers. Results from our recent industry survey highlight that 69% of people want to see more public charging points, and we’re glad to more than double the number of Mer stations in Dorset with the new tranche of fast and rapid charge units.”
The project will continue with future phases in due course across public car parks, leisure facilities and other locations. Residents are encouraged to suggest locations for the new charge points in the Council’s survey.
“Results from our recent industry surveys highlight that 69% of people want to see more public charging points, and we’re glad to more than double the number of Mer stations in Dorset with this new tranche of fast and rapid charge units”
Alex Hinchcliffe, Mer UK – Public Charging Interim Managing Director
Cllr Ray Bryan, Portfolio Holder for Highways, Travel and Environment at Dorset Council, commented, “The greater spread of EV chargers in Dorset will urge people to make the switch to electric vehicles, support the reduction of vehicle emissions across the county, assist where home charging is not an option and help reduce holidaymakers’ range anxiety. More coverage means tourists can relax while they’re visiting, rather than worrying about their journeys around the Jurassic coast. We hope this will encourage more EV drivers to explore Dorset, giving the county’s tourist figures a boost.”
Mer’s mission is to make sustainable electric mobility easy and accessible to everyone.
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