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Calls for more EV charging points to be installed in Aberdeenshire villages

MSP Liam Kerr and Councillor Gillian Owen at the new electric vehicle recharging point in Ellon.
MSP Liam Kerr and Councillor Gillian Owen at the new electric vehicle recharging point in Ellon.

The Scottish Government is being called on to install more electric vehicle (EV) charging points across Aberdeenshire.

North East MSP Liam Kerr and Ellon council candidate Gillian Owen have highlighted several locations that don’t have any charging facilities available for users.

The government previously said it aims to phase out the need for new petrol and diesel cars by 2030 to meet climate change targets.

However, concerns have now been raised that people from rural areas are being discouraged from using electric vehicles due to a lack of charging points.

MSP Liam Kerr said it is “vital” charging points are installed in rural areas. Photo: Shutterstock.

Mrs Owen said: “We are still ridiculously short of electric chargers in Aberdeenshire and villages like Newburgh and Foveran still don’t have any whatsoever.

“If the Scottish Government is serious about everyone changing to electric cars the infrastructure locally has to be in place to support that and at the moment, it’s severely lacking.

“People living in rural areas are being stranded by the roadside due to the appalling shortage of charging points available for them to use.

“This is why I’m calling for the rollout to be ramped up so places such as Newburgh, Ythanbank, Foveran and Collieston can finally have a charging point for people to use.”

‘Simply not good enough’

The government-owned organisation ChargePlace Scotland had installed around 2,100 charging points around Scotland by the start of the year.

In January, there were only 45 chargers per 100,000 people in Aberdeenshire, compared to 91 per 100,000 people in the Highlands.

Mr Kerr added: “Taxpayers in the north-east have seen very little value for money when it comes to ChargePlace Scotland’s progress which has been shockingly bad in areas like Aberdeenshire.

“Many people across the north-east are still not confident enough to buy an electric vehicle due to the lack of charging points in their area while the ones that are in place are often broken.

“At the current rate of Scottish Government progress, it could take around 45 years to get to their target of 30,000 chargers which is simply not good enough.

“Villages across Aberdeenshire must not be overlooked and it’s vital charging points are installed in rural areas sooner rather than later if we are to tackle the climate emergency.”

Last year, transport and environment reporters from the P&J tested the reality of driving an electric van on a road trip from John O’Groats to Glasgow.

They discovered Aberdeenshire is “miles behind in the electric vehicle revolution”, with a number of broken charging points and diversions required.

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