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Guidance: Rapid charging fund

The rapid charging fund (RCF) will enable a comprehensive ultra-rapid charging network by funding prohibitively expensive grid connections.

Guidance: Rapid charging fund

Published: 08 January 2024
By Chris Haycock



Fund objectives

The rapid charging fund (RCF) is designed to accelerate industry’s own investments in transport decarbonisation. Access to a comprehensive ultra-rapid chargepoint network will enable more consumers to confidently purchase electric vehicles (EVs).

The objectives of the fund are to:

  • enable the market to provide charging infrastructure at strategic locations to support the government’s vision of the transition to a 100% electric car and van fleet
  • address charge anxiety by providing grant funding that will future-proof grid capacity where it is not commercially viable, leading to a greater provision of ultra-rapid chargepoints
RCF pilot

In addition to the objectives above, the RCF pilot aims to:

  • generate an improved understanding of the likely barriers to the delivery of core objectives of the fund
  • identify opportunities to address these barriers through the design of the fund and its delivery mechanisms
  • accelerate the delivery of future-proofed connections at motorway service areas, where connection costs are a barrier to meeting EV charging demand

The government expects the private sector to deliver chargepoints, but will, under the pilot, fund non-commercially viable costs of future-proofing grid capacity.

The pilot will fund a portion of the cost of upgrading connections at motorway service areas in England only.

We are also consulting on the design of the RCF fund and are seeking views from anyone with an interest in the future of EV charging infrastructure.

Apply to participate in the pilot

The pilot is open to motorway service area operators in England only.

You can apply to participate from 6 December 2023. The closing date for applications is 28 February 2024.

To find out more, you can email us at rapidchargingfund@ozev.gov.uk.

Alternatively, write to us at:

Rapid charging fundOffice for Zero Emission VehiclesDepartment for Transport33 Horseferry RoadLondon, SW1P 4DR

Background

In November 2020, government published the Prime Minister’s ten point plan for a green industrial revolution, which included proposals to accelerate the shift towards EVs. In September 2023, the Prime Minister announced that the sale of diesel and petrol cars would be banned from 2035. All new vehicles will be required to be 100% zero emission from 2035.

Radically improving the UK’s offer for charging on longer journeys is important for acceptance of the zero emissions vehicle mandate: the single biggest carbon-saving measure in the government’s Net Zero strategy for 2050. There is a need for a highly visible and dependable charging network to support current EV drivers and to accelerate future EV purchases in the short and medium term to make progress towards net zero.

Published 28 September 2021 Last updated 8 January 2024 + show all updates 8 January 2024 The closing date for applications to participate in the pilot has been extended until 28 February 2024.

6 December 2023 The rapid charging fund pilot is now open to motorway service areas in England.

28 September 2021 First published.

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