A report to Cabinet in late November set out how North Tyneside Council intends to support an increase in electric vehicle use with the provision of additional charging points.
In September, the local authority committed to doing everything within its gift to work towards being carbon net zero by 2030. Twenty years ahead of the Government’s target on climate change.
And with transport contributing to around 35 per cent of the borough’s carbon emissions, increasing the use of electric vehicles plays a major part.
In the same way that providing petrol pumps doesn’t fall under the remit of the council, chargepoints are provided by private providers, however the local authority does already host 16 points in its car parks across the borough.
However, in recognising how important it is to residents, the report details how the council intends to help increase the number of chargepoints in the borough.
And now it's been approved by Cabinet, it will see more electric chargepoints available in its public car parks and leisure centres, as well as ensuring there’s provision for disabled access at the points.
On top of this, the council will ensure chargepoints are included as part of new housing developments, as well as encouraging residents and businesses to access government grants to install their own if they have private off-street parking.
And in a further effort to support residents – in areas of terraced streets where households don’t have private off-street parking, if no companies bring forward plans for charpoints in the area, the council will work with private chargepoint providers to look at introducing ‘Hub’ arrangements, for example at nearby car parks or public buildings.
Cllr Sandra Graham, cabinet member for the Environment said: “We are absolutely committed to creating a sustainable North Tyneside and we are doing all that is in our powers to do so.
“We know how vital sustainable transport is in helping to achieve our net zero ambitions, but also how important accessible charging points are for many of our residents and businesses.
“Whilst we may not be the provider of the chargepoints, we are doing everything we can to work with private providers to increase availability.
“We are also delighted with the huge inroads we have already made in reducing our own and the borough’s carbon footprint, thanks to the support of residents and businesses.
“I was pleased to hear from large local and regional organisations, as well as residents, at a ‘call for evidence’ event I hosted earlier in the month about their positive impact on emissions and their ambitions for future work.”
At the same Cabinet meeting, Cllr Graham presented another report which detailed all of the good work underway by the council to tackle climate change.
Energy-saving streetlights; electric vehicles; green investment, energy generation measures and decarbonisation in council buildings and homes are just some of the ways in which the local authority has reduced its own carbon emissions by 52 per cent – two years ahead of its own target, and the Borough’s carbon emissions by 41 per cent.
Initiatives such as improved recycling and biodiversity areas with wildflowers and tree planting have all played a part in improving environmental sustainability.
Most recently, the local authority has focused on minimising single-use plastics, with public water fountains installed and a unique 6ft seal sculpture created out of discarded plastics as a reminder to the public of the impact of actions on marine life and showcasing local sustainable businesses.
And there’s more to come – the council announced its ambitions to work towards the borough being carbon net-zero by 2030 in September and it is currently working on the plans to achieve this.