Guide helps local authorities build EV-friendly communities

EECA has launched a guide to help local authorities make their communities more friendly to electric vehicles (EVs).

"Driving a Low Emissions Economy" summarises the environmental, social and economic case for EVs, provides advice on operational and long-term planning, and outlines practical steps councils can take to help New Zealand transition to a low emissions economy.

The guide is produced by the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA) as part of the Government’s information campaign to accelerate the uptake of EVs in New Zealand.

“Transforming our fleet to run on electricity is one of the most effective ways for cities and towns to reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” says EECA Chief Executive Andrew Caseley. “Local authorities around the country have stated their determination to play their part. We want to provide practical, informed advice to help them get things moving.”

Transport is responsible for about 18% of New Zealand’s total greenhouse gas emissions each year (45% of energy-related emissions).

The guide suggests a range of approaches local authorities can take, from policy to promotion.

Long-term and annual plans provide an opportunity to consider how EVs can support goals related to the environment, air quality and economic development.

Other areas covered include how to transition your fleet to electric, how to support the rollout of charging infrastructure, and ways to welcome EVs to your community such as awareness-raising events, designated parking and well-placed signage.

Several local authorities have already found innovative and ambitious ways to make electric vehicles business as usual, says Mr Caseley.

Christchurch City Council for example initiated, researched and developed a 100% battery electric car sharing concept for Christchurch and then partnered with several organisations to go to market. Yoogo Share has delivered the 100% battery electric car sharing service to businesses and the public with access to a fleet of 100 cars from eight hubs since launch in February.

Northland Regional Council has 10 electric vehicles in its fleet and plans to add two more. It has worked with partners to install fast charging stations across Northland.

Media enquiries:

Kathryn Fitzpatrick, Senior Communications Advisor, EECA

Phone: 04 470 2238 or 027 403 3378