Electric vehicle charging network may be sold off
ESB Networks must sell, self-fund or secure Government money to operate the electric vehicle (EV) charging network, the regulator has ruled.
In a decision paper, the Commission for Regulation of Utilities (CRU) said that electricity customers could no longer be expected to fund the operation of 1,000 charging points across the State, and that new sources of funding must be found.
In March 2014, the CRU approved a research project designed to assess and report on the affect of EVs on the electricity distribution system.
ESB Networks was allowed to fund the pilot project by recovering up to €25m through network charges, which are paid by electricity customers.
An additional €6m was spent, which ESB must pay. But the regulator has now decided ESB must divest the assets by selling them, getting the Government to subsidise the project, or securing alternative sources of funding which could include a charge paid by owners of electric vehicles. The CRU said it could not force electricity customers to "cross subsidise" the transport sector.