Story image

Innovative EV projects receive $3.97m government funding

08 Aug 18

There could be a lot more electric vehicles (EVs) on New Zealand’s roads very soon, thanks to a new government project that aims to show how versatile EVs can be.

19 automotive workshops around the country have the chance to develop innovative EV projects to test the technologies in ‘unproven’ industries.

Energy and Resources Minister Dr Megan Woods announced the project yesterday at Porirua Motors, which is one of the 19 companies involved. The 19 firms will offer customers use of an electric courtesy car, thanks to a co-funded project given the green light last year.

“Part of the focus on this round is to demonstrate light and heavy electric vehicles in sectors of the economy where the technology is relatively unproven,” she says.

“Projects to get the go-ahead include a lines maintenance electric truck with an elevating platform; New Zealand’s first all-electric water truck; five supermarket distribution electric trucks; and electric vans with purposes including parks maintenance, rural postal delivery and food rescue.”

The project will receive $3.87 million in funding as part of the fourth round of the Low Emission Vehicles Contestable Fund, which is administered by the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA).

“This is about demonstrating the rapidly evolving technology that is making electric vehicles a practical option for a growing number of businesses,” Woods continues.

The funding will also support the continued growth of New Zealand’s EV public charging network. In the North Island, three new fast chargers will accept standard payment cards.

Woods says an extra 22 public fast chargers will be installed on key routes. They include SH1 between Christchurch and Blenheim; the Southern Scenic Tourist Route; and the Kapiti and Horowhenua coasts.

“This new funding demonstrates the Government’s commitment to increasing the number of low emissions vehicles as part of our programme to move towards a net zero carbon economy by 2050. This is an ambitious goal and with funding for projects like these we are putting our money where our mouth is," Woods says.

She adds that the government has contributed $13.97 million in funding, which has been matched by more than $23 million in third party funding. So far, 24 projects from previous rounds have put ‘results on the road’.

“The fund is one of several initiatives in the Government’s Electric Vehicles Programme, which aims to double the number of EVs every year to reach 64,000 by the end of 2021,” she concludes.

The fifth funding round will open on August 15. Woods is challenging applicants to explore the potential of vehicle-to-grid and smart charging technologies. 

IDC: Standalone VR headset shipments grow 428.6% in 3Q18
The VR headset market returned to growth in 3Q18 after four consecutive quarters of decline and now makes up 97% of the combined market.
Spark Lab launches free cybersecurity tool for SMBs
Spark Lab has launched a new tool that it hopes will help New Zealand’s small businesses understand their cybersecurity risks.
Preparing for the future of work – growing big ideas from small spaces
We’ve all seen it: our offices are changing from the traditional four walls - to no walls. A need to reduce real estate costs is a key driver, as is enabling a more diverse and agile workforce.
Bluetooth-enabled traps could spell the end for NZ's pests
A Wellington conservation tech company has come up with a way of using Bluetooth to help capture pests like rats and stoats.
CERT NZ highlights rise of unauthorised access incidents
“In one case, the attacker gained access and tracked the business’s emails for at least six months. They gathered extensive knowledge of the business’s billing cycles."
Report finds GCSB in compliance with NZ rights
The Inspector-General has given the GCSB its compliance tick of approval for the fourth year in a row.
Preparing for e-invoicing requirements
The New Zealand and Australian governments are working on a joint approach to create trans-Tasman standards to e-invoicing that’ll make it easier for businesses in both countries work with each other and across the globe
5c more per share: Trade Me bidding war heats up
Another bidder has entered the bidding arena as the potential sale of Trade Me kicks up a notch.