WELLINGTON, March 22 (Xinhua) -- New Zealand on Wednesday launched the first national EV (Electric Vehicle) charging strategy, Charging Our Future, which includes plans to provide EV charging stations in almost every town in the country, and charging hubs every 150-200 km on main highways.
"Our vision is for New Zealand to have world-class EV charging infrastructure that is accessible, affordable, convenient, and reliable," Transport Minister Michael Wood told the launching ceremony.
Emissions from light vehicles are the single largest source of transport emissions in New Zealand, partially due to having some of the most fuel-inefficient and emissions-intensive vehicles in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries.
"This costs Kiwis at the pump and is damaging to our health and the environment," Wood said, adding that switching to EVs would be like buying petrol for 40 cents per liter, which would make a big difference in household budgets.
"Charging Our Future" strategy sets targets to provide journey charging hubs every 150-200 kilometers on main highways, a public charger for every 20-40 EVs in urban areas, and public charging at community facilities for all settlements with 2,000 or more people, Wood said, adding that meeting the targets would see tens of thousands more EV chargers across the country.
These new targets carefully balance facilitating infrastructure to support different trips and journeys that EV drivers make while ensuring that rural and provincial New Zealand locations are accessible for residents and visitors with EVs, he said.
The country's clean car policies mean there are more than 69,000 EVs on roads, over 80 percent more than at the end of 2021.
"This strategy will ensure we can sustain the uptake of EVs as we see more people making the switch," said the minister.