Municipalities do not want to manage charging stations

Charging station for electric cars

There are still too few electric vehicle charging stations in Germany.

(Photo: dpa)

Berlin Federal Minister of Transport Volker Wissing (FDP) must expect resistance to his plan to create one million electric vehicle charging stations by municipalities by 2030.

The director general of the Association of Cities and Municipalities, Gerd Landsberg, told the Handelsblatt that the electricity charging network is “an important task for society as a whole”. However, it is essential to “distribute the tasks and burdens equally”. This cannot be the case with the draft of the new edition of the Regulatory Plan for charging infrastructures.

The criticisms also come from the German Association of Cities. “We want to go beyond the car-friendly city,” said general manager Helmut Dedy. “Replacing combustion cars with electric cars: it’s not a turnaround in traffic.” In the city, the car is just one of the many means of transport.

The Federal Transport Minister must no longer just discuss with federal states and municipalities his plan to introduce a discounted ticket, the so-called “9 for 90 ticket”, for three months in local public transport on 1 June. There are also problems with the charging stations. Either way, it is the municipalities that are supposed to implement the federal government’s goals.

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In view of the ambitious climate goals, the traffic light government has set itself the goal of building a nationwide charging network and thus promoting the sale of electric vehicles. As of April 1, there were 50,000 normal and 8,700 fast charging points, just around 2,000 and 300 more charging points than in early March.

In this period, just under 35,000 new purely electric electric cars were registered. Just over 600,000 of these vehicles were on the road at the beginning of the year. According to the government’s plans, by 2030 there will be 15 million.

When it comes to charging infrastructure, Wissing wants to give municipalities “a key position”. According to the draft of its master plan, available to the Handelsblatt, currently “there is not a single public charging point” in half of all municipalities. But a “basic supply” is needed. Municipalities would be “responsible” for this if the private sector did not create a network.

Binding masterplans by the end of 2024

Landsberg harshly criticized the suggestion: “Cities and municipalities are not gas station operators,” he said. The municipalities have not been able to implement such a “guarantee task”.

The federal government’s national infrastructure charging control center must define supply targets, which are then set by law. By the end of 2024, municipalities should therefore draw up their own binding master plans for infrastructure expansion and thus ensure that all electric car drivers without their own charging stations find sufficient charging options in public spaces. This is what the federal government is planning.

The Association of Municipalities and Municipalities and City Day does not want to reserve a lot of space. “To effectively accelerate the expansion of the charging infrastructure, we must not rely solely on road pricing,” Landsberg said. Instead, neighborhood solutions should be found and retail and gastronomy in particular should be more involved than before in the development of the charging infrastructure. Many energy suppliers are already working with municipalities to expand the charging network.

“Buses and trains, cyclists and pedestrians need more space in the city,” said Dedy, Chief Executive of City Day. As a result, charging stations should be built to save space, for example at petrol stations or in front to supermarkets. There is also potential in multi-storey car parks. Furthermore, “the goal is full profitability”. Federal and state governments as well as local authorities would promote “dedicated” investors.

Environmental groups are calling for a tax system for electric cars

Environmental organizations, on the other hand, don’t even see charging stations as the key factor in starting the electric vehicle market. In a letter to Transport Minister Wissing, Federal Finance Minister Christian Lindner (FDP) and Federal Minister of Economy Robert Habeck (Greens), Greenpeace and Transport and Environment underline that climate goals by 2030 can only be achieved if “over 20 million electric cars are registered”. . To do this, every second new vehicle must be fully electric by 2025 and by 2030 it would be 85%. The letter is available to Handelsblatt.

The government relies on subsidy programs, purchase bonuses, and tax incentives to achieve its goal. Environmental associations, on the other hand, are calling for “the revision of fiscal policy frameworks”: the tax privilege for company cars for plug-in hybrids and combustion engines should be significantly reduced and entrepreneurs should no longer be able to cancel these vehicles. For battery-powered cars, however, a super write-off should be possible.

In addition, there should be a new car registration tax based on emissions. Consequently, the vehicle tax should be based more on the amount of CO2 emitted by a vehicle. The associations welcome Minister Habeck’s plan to phase out the purchase premium for plug-in hybrids by the end of the year. Only with all the measures “can the climate goals in 2030 and climate neutrality in 2045 in Germany be achieved”.

Moreover: Wissing no longer wants to expand the waterways

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