In September 2017, as part of the Scottish Government's Programme for Government, Nicola Sturgeon announced that all petrol and diesel vehicles would be phased out in Scotland by 2032.
The underlying vision is a significant reduction in greenhouse gas emissions will be accompanied by marked improvements in local air quality, noise pollution and public health.
Glasgow has introduced Scotland's first Low Emission Zone (LEZ), further driving the demand for ultra-low emission vehicles (ULEV). Phase 1 of Glasgow's LEZ applies to local service buses only, however when Phase 2 is enforced from 1 June 2023, all vehicles entering the city centre zone must meet the required emission standards to avoid a penalty unless the vehicle is exempt.
Electric vehicles will be compliant.
Glasgow is key to Scotland's air quality improvement success and unlocking the Region's full economic potential to make it the low-carbon 'growth engine' for the area.
However, the Scottish Public Sector cannot, in isolation, deliver a charging network of the scale require to facilitate the wholesale transition to EVs. Any organisation that encourages travel by passenger vehicle should be providing infrastructure, including but not limited to retailers, leisure facilities, employers and fleet operators.
Related to this, EV owners with driveways shouldn't be solely reliant on the public infrastructure. These chargers should remain for those who don't have parking and therefore have no other option.
This is also an opportunity to challenge the idea of personal vehicle ownership. Most vehicles are only used for 9 hours a week, that's 95% of their life they sit idle, blocking roads and pavements.
People really need to consider whether they need a car or whether they can walk, cycle or take public transport.
Another option is car club vehicles, of which there are a large number in Glasgow, many of which are electric.
Our EV network facilitates in excess of tens of thousands of charges annually for over thousands of individual EV users.
All Council chargers are connected to the Charge Place Scotland network and users can register for an RFID card on their website. Chargers can also be accessed using the mobile app.
As demand on the network continues to rise, enforcement of spaces is critical for the user experience and crucial to maintaining user confidence specifically in the network and in EVs generally.
Having confidence in the ability to charge a vehicle remains the single largest concern for potential EV users. Some of this stress is mitigated by technology, for example the ability to check the availability of charge points using a mobile application. However, rules around how charge points are utilised will also provide comfort to users. Hence reference is made to charging bays rather than parking bays.
Current Traffic Regulation Orders (TROs) apply 24 hours a day. These restrictions will be enforced by Parking Attendants and, if necessary, the issuing of Penalty Charge Notices (PCNs).
There is an assumption from many drivers that restrictions on these bays end at 6pm, similar to other parking spaces, however this is not always the case and you should always look for signage at charge points to be sure which restrictions apply to the location you wish to use.