As Wyndham's EV Landscape Evolves, a 'Pay for Power' Expectation is on the Horizon
In a bid to support the ongoing transition to electric vehicles (EVs) within the road transport sector in Australia, Wyndham City Council is set to discuss and decide upon a draft electric vehicle policy in their upcoming meeting tomorrow night. The policy aims to define the Council’s roles and responsibilities in facilitating this transition and outlines positions, frameworks, and actions to be taken.
As part of the initiative, the Council has taken the lead in seeding the introduction of electric vehicle chargers throughout the city. Council-owned and implemented public charging stations have been established, with ongoing efforts to explore additional opportunities for charging infrastructure installation.
To address the maintenance and operating costs associated with the existing Council-owned EV charging infrastructure in Wyndham, a recommendation has been made to introduce user fees starting from December 1, 2023. The proposed fees are designed to be market competitive, ranging between 25 to 50 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh), aligning with current rates charged by operators providing similar charging speeds.
After a comprehensive market analysis of charging infrastructure in Victoria, particularly in Melbourne, Geelong, and Ballarat, specific fees for Wyndham’s charging stations have been proposed:
– 22kW Wunggerwill Dhurrung Centre: 25c per kWh
– 22kW Hunter Building, Werribee: 25c per kWh
– 50kW Bembit Bag-Rook Community Centre: 45c per kWh
– 50kW Civic Centre, Werribee: 45c per kWh
These fees are recommended to be subject to annual review to ensure continued cost recovery and competitiveness in the market.
The rationale behind introducing user fees is rooted in supporting Council’s strategic commitments towards an electrified road transport sector while exercising fiscal responsibility. The fees will not only cover the ongoing operating and maintenance costs of the infrastructure but also contribute to creating market conditions that encourage private operators to invest in charging infrastructure within Wyndham and across Australia.
The proposed fees aim to strike a balance between ensuring sustainability and avoiding potential dis-benefits associated with not recovering costs or dissuading other providers from entering the Wyndham market.
The community consultation period for the draft policy is scheduled for 12 weeks, spanning from December 2023 to February 2024. Pending Council’s support to progress, the feedback obtained during this period will be crucial in shaping the final policy. Following the completion of community consultation, the Council plans to report back for formal adoption of the policy, taking into consideration emerging trends and technologies in the electric vehicle space.
Wyndham City Council acknowledges the importance of playing a pivotal role in supporting the transition to an electrified road transport sector, aligning with the Smart City Strategy 2019 and the Resilient Wyndham Strategy 2021. The proposed policy covers four key areas: charging at home, land-use planning actions, public charging infrastructure, and leadership in incorporating the Council’s own fleet transition.
In summary, the proposed user fees represent a strategic step forward in ensuring the sustainable development of electric vehicle infrastructure in Wyndham, fostering a supportive environment for both Council and private operators to contribute to the broader electrified road transport network in Australia.