We look at Sweden’s public EV charging infrastructure, and how the Government is encouraging the transition to electric transportation.
Sweden, one of the countries Mer operates in, has made significant steps towards reducing its carbon footprint. A space that Sweden consistently performs highly in is the electric vehicle sector, as the increase in EV driving and the subsequent development of the country’s EV charging infrastructure is invariably reducing their transportation system’s environmental impact.
We have looked at Sweden’s public EV charging infrastructure to see how they are advancing their electric transportation network and encouraging people to join the EV transition.
The strategy notes that domestic transport accounted for one third of greenhouse gas emissions in Sweden, with cars and heavy goods vehicles being the main contributors. It goes on to recognise the need to support the growth of sustainable renewable fuels and the infrastructure for these fuels, which includes electrification, to reduce emissions within the transport field.
Accompanying this discussion was the acknowledgment of long-term planning for the expansion of electrified roads and the need for rapid charging for heavy goods vehicles.
An Overview of Sweden’s EV Market
As of August 2022, there are 384 582 rechargeable vehicles in Sweden. Data from quarter 3 of this year shows there were 219,662 plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEV), an increase from 215,953 in the previous quarter, and 151.086 battery electric vehicle (BEV) passenger cars, up from 146,220 in Q2.
Compared to the data from the end of 2012, where there were a mere 582 BEV passenger cars, Sweden’s EV market has experienced huge growth. It is predicted that this growth will continue, with 2.5 million rechargeable vehicles on the roads in 2030.
As of August, the Tesla Model 3 topped the list of the top 10 rechargeable BEVs (13711), whilst the Volvo XC60 T8 twin engine held the spot for PHEVs (17907).
Sweden’s public EV Charging Infrastructure
As one of the first countries to make a net-zero emissions target, it is unsurprising that Sweden takes the 8th spot in Forbes Advisor’s analysis of the countries that are best-suited to EV drivers. LeasePlan’s EV Readiness Index 2022 shows that Sweden’s charging infrastructure maturity has improved since 2021.
In comparison, Gotland, Blekinge and Kronoberg lag with only 170, 176 and 191 chargers respectively.
A unique element of Sweden’s charging portfolio is their plans for a permanent electrified road. Following the opening of an electric road in 2018, which linked Stockholm Arlanda airport and a logistics site outside of the capital, Trafikverket, The Swedish Transport Administration, plans to create a permanent 21km electric road between Hallsberg and Örebro by 2025.
Incentivising The EV Shift
The various support packages and financial incentives the Swedish Governments of recent years have implemented highlight the country’s dedication to nurturing not only EV driving, but the longevity and growth of their EV charging infrastructure.
‘Charge The Car Grant’
The grant provides up to 15 000 SEK of the cost of electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) materials for businesses, organizations and multihome.
Tax Reduction For Green Technology
For individuals, Sweden offers a tax reduction maximum 50 000 SEK per person per year for green technology. For the installation of EV charge points, individuals can receive a tax reduction with 50% of labour and materials costs. The tax reduction opportunity also supports the installation of grid-connected solar cell systems and systems for storing self-produced electrical energy.
Klimatklivet supports businesses, municipalities and organisations with ideas for investments, including charging infrastructure, that have a ‘high climate benefit’. The support offered is often in the region of 30-65% of the investment cost, and a maximum of 70% of the investment cost.
These schemes accompany several systems which incentivise drivers to switch to electric vehicles. Since 2018, the Bonus-Malus system has ensured vehicles with high carbon dioxide emissions face higher vehicle tax in the first 3 years of ownership, which reduces to the ordinary vehicle tax from the 4th year. By contrast, low carbon dioxide emissions can receive a bonus upon purchase.
However, Sweden’s advances in EV charging are not without its challenges. The expansion of public EV charging is not progressing at a fast enough pace in relation to the sale of EVs on the Swedish market. With just over 16,000 public chargers to provide for over 300,000 for drivers of rechargeable vehicles, the infrastructure requires a significant scale up.
Mer Sweden is helping by growing the country’s public and private EV charging infrastructure.
What can the UK learn from Sweden?
With numerous financial support packages and incentives available and even distribution of charging stations across the country, Sweden is setting a positive example of how charging infrastructure should be developed.
Having a focused programme of financial support towards installing charging infrastructure means businesses, landowners and drivers will be increasingly inspired to delve into what remains an unfamiliar world for the majority, as will methods such as cutting the annual circulation tax for ‘super green’ cars for the first 5 years after registration. Supporting citizens in the coming years through what some perceive to be a daunting transition will be crucial to securing the UK’s journey towards a carbon neutral transportation sector.
Though certain areas of Sweden have received more infrastructure development to date, continuing the investment across the country as a whole will see more drivers perceiving electric driving as something that is accessible for all, regardless of location. This will drive the country’s shift forwards towards the goal of adopting a greener transportation system in the long-term. The UK can follow Sweden by ensuring even distribution of charge points to encourage UK residents to support the EV transition.
Public Charging in the UK
Mer has experience working with local authorities across Europe and in the UK. We help local authorities set up future-fit public EV charging infrastructure.
Contact us today to start your public EV charging infrastructure journey with Mer.
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