Cenex, working with Energy Saving Trust, were commissioned by Bristol City Council in 2017 to conduct a feasibility study looking at the provision of electric vehicle recharging infrastructure across the South West as part of the Go Ultra Low West programme.

The City Council’s bid to the Office for Low Emission Vehicles Go Ultra-Low City scheme determined that existing chargepoint infrastructure would be unable to meet local demand by 2020, significantly reducing the attractiveness of EVs to the public, businesses and the councils’ own fleet. Working across four regions (Bath and North-East Somerset, Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire) Cenex, working with the Energy Saving Trust, have written a report that:

  • Assessed the existing efficiency and usage of the chargepoints in the South West region to identify where pinch points in demand where, and recommend areas where additional infrastructure was required;
  • Baselined the existing vehicle population, and created low, medium and high uptake scenarios for the region of ultra-low emission vehicles, suggesting a ratio of chargepoints to vehicles required for rapid, fast and slow chargers. This included looking at battery size forecasts, charging innovations and a regional technology roadmap;
  • Identified new locations for infrastructure, 276 potential sites in total, using a set chargepoint criteria and input from the Authorities;
  • Assessed the financial potential of different contract options for the Authority depending on the time of procurement processes, framework and procedure chosen;
  • Wrote procurement specifications, guidance documents and service levels to start the procurement process of expanding and growing the network.

The Energy Saving Trust also ran a stakeholder engagement survey to gather feedback on the thoughts, opinions and ideas for the current network, and the service levels needed by a chargepoint supplier to future proof the network, and encourage more plug-in vehicle uptake. The survey gathered over 1,000 responses from businesses, consumers, public transport operators and local authority users.