The Queensland government has announced their plan to build one of the world's longest electric vehicle highways.
The ‘Queensland Electric Super Highway’ will span 2,000 kilometres and stretch from Cairns to Coolangatta and west to Toowoomba. 18 fast-charging stations will be incorporated along the stretch of road to encourage motorists to drive electric vehicles. The highway will be free to use for the first 12 months of its operation.
“This project is ambitious, but we want as many people as possible on board the electric vehicle revolution, as part of our transition to a low emissions future,” says Steven Miles, environment minister and acting main roads minister.
"[The charging stations] will be available for use at no cost for the initial phase of the super highway, so we can encourage as many people as possible to start using them.”
Green energy, purchased either through green energy credits or offsets, will be used to power the highway and its incorporated amenities, further reducing the environmental impact of the road.
"EVs [electric vehicles] can provide not only a reduced fuel cost for Queenslanders, but [also] an environmentally friendly transport option, particularly when [they are] charged [using] renewable energy,” says Miles.
According to the minister, electric vehicle ownership rates around the world are steadily increasing. This is largely due to significant advances in battery technology and the continued cost reductions of EVs.
"The most recent Queensland Household Energy Survey showed that 50 [percent] of Queenslanders will consider an electric vehicle, plug-in hybrid or regenerative braking hybrid when purchasing a new car in the next two years. [The] majority [of those surveyed] said improvements to public fast-charging infrastructure would further tempt them into purchasing an EV,” he says.
The 18 charging stations are expected to be rolled out within the next six months.