Future proofing EV charging networks

Future proofing EV charging networks

By Jayson Whitaker, Commercial Director, Networks

When developers in West London were warned that power capacity constraints could impact new home construction over the next five years, it highlighted one of the challenges associated with the drive for electrification on the journey to Net Zero.

In the case of the London boroughs of Hillingdon, Ealing and Hounslow, pressure on the network was attributed to an influx of battery and data centres, but there’s also a lesson to be learned for the transition to electric vehicles.

Reflecting on World EV Day (September 9), it’s interesting to see how rapidly demand for EVs is increasing. At the end of July 2022, there were around 33,200 charging points across the UK – a 35% increase over the previous 12 months. The appetite for sustainable technology is clearly growing and no more so than in those cities with clean air zones and emissions charging. Here, there’s a strong disincentive for owning fossil fuel vehicles.

Logic says that these urban areas will likely experience higher demand for electric vehicles. So, as part of the move to greater electrification in almost every area of our lives, we need to ensure that we plan for charge point capacity to support the greener way of living to which we all aspire.

EV charging infrastructure is still in its infancy and will certainly experience accelerating expansion in step with the phasing out of new petrol and diesel cars by 2030 (and hybrids by 2035). 

Thinking longer-term to future proof EV infrastructure

As a leader in the specification and adoption of the network infrastructure that supports the expansion of the UK’s EV charging network, Energy Assets Electricity Networks (EAEN) works alongside major providers such as InstaVolt and MFG. We understand the challenges that grid constraint can present, so for every site we adopt, we take a longer-term view that helps charge point operators future-proof their investment.

For example, we base our asset values on likely future capacity and design in local network resilience from the outset to avoid the need for costly uprating in the future. We do this by applying for adequate capacity from the upstream DNO to future proof the connection. Not anticipating this future requirement could potentially result in significant reinforcement costs.

Ensuring a straightforward network adoption process

We also make the network adoption process as straightforward as possible, thanks to resources such as our in-house legal team, Asset Value Portal and our online Milestone portal, which provides easily accessible progress reports on land rights and contract status. Our standard network specification also enables operators to roll-out new sites efficiently by simplifying the administrative and installation process for Independent Connections Providers.

Remaining focused on the future

All this contributes to significant progress in the marketplace for EAEN, with over 100 multi-point charging sites already energised, hundreds more in train, and a growing customer base of world-renowned brands.

And, with our own network of EV chargers serving the Energy Assets Group offices, we’re also focused on the future and our impact on the environment and the local communities we operate within.

Keep up with the latest from us – follow us on LinkedIn.

National Gas Emergency ServiceElectricity fault?

We’re fully accredited in multi-utility metering and multi-utility infrastructure construction and adoption.