'More ambitious' rollout of electric vehicle charging points needed say Kilkenny councillors

'We have a number of charging points, but we need to up our game'

Sam Matthews

Reporter:

Sam Matthews

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sam.matthews@kilkennypeople.ie

EV charging point

A recent Kilkenny People story revealed that Kilkenny has just 17 charging points across the county.

City councillors have passed a Notice of Motion to increase the number of electric vehicle charging points across the city to meet the predicted increase in electric vehicles here.

The Notice of Motion was brought by Fine Gael Councillor David Fitzgerald. A recent Kilkenny People story revealed that Kilkenny has just 17 charging points across the county.

“We have a number of charging points, but we need to up our game,” said Cllr Fitzgerald.

He said he wanted to see “a significant increase” in the number of charging points, and for the council to be proactive, rather than wait for people to buy electric cars and then provide them.

“The local authority should roll out a much more ambitious programme than what is currently available,” he said.

The motion was seconded by Cllr Malcolm Noonan, who said that the technology for electric vehicles had come on in leaps and bounds. Both Councillors Fitzgerald and Noonan noted the students outside City Hall protesting inaction on Climate Change.

“I think it’s important that we meet the demands of these young people by making a bold statement here in Kilkenny,” said Cllr Noonan.

The Green Party councillor also reiterated a previous request for the National Transport Authority to reconsider its preferred option of a diesel bus fleet for the expanded Kilkenny City bus service, and said the delays in rolling out the service could mean that electric or biogas should be the preferred option.

“Even at this stage, I wonder is it possible to look at it,” he said.

“The window of time for acting on climate change is narrow and thousands of young people all over Ireland and many more globally are demanding leadership.”

Referring to the Notice of Motion, council director of services Tim Butler said that 3 Counties Energy Agency (3 CEA) had made an application for funding for charging points, which did not get approval. He said the ESB had about €17 million in funding for similar projects nationwide, but likely would be mostly focused on Dublin.

“It’s something we should put down and develop a policy on for the city and county,” he said.

“Significant funds will be required, so it’s something we should look at through the SPC.”