Understanding the Workplace Charging Scheme in the UK
The UK government is serious about achieving its target of zero emissions by 2050. It even gave UK residents more time to switch to electric vehicles by moving the ban on combustion-powered car sales from 2030 to 2032. The UK is coming up with plans to reduce greenhouse gases, as a signatory to the 2015 Paris Agreement on Climate Change.
An electric vehicle (EV) requires the charging of its battery instead of filling its fuel tank with petrol. The car has to connect to a charging outlet, either from a public charging station, a charging point at work or from a home charger.
Workplace charging scheme
The government in the UK provides incentives and grants to encourage people to buy electric cars and utilise and install charging points.
While there are already more than 30, 000 public charging points across the UK, that is a far cry from the 2.6 million charging points they need when the country goes into nationwide EV car use by 2050.
Therefore, the government is covering all bases. Aside from the public charging stations, the government, through the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV), operates the Workplace Charging Scheme (WCS), a government-funded plan of action aimed at businesses. The system subsidises part of the cost of the purchase and installation of a charging point.
What is the WCS grant?
The government provides a voucher for the WCS scheme. The company has to work with an approved provider like Power-EV.co.uk for the purchase and installation of a charge point. The provider absorbs the cost and claims the funds from the government. The government only allows OLEV-approved charge points.
Worth of the WCS grant
According to the UK’s 2020 Spring Budget, it will still provide a discount of up to £350 for the purchase and installation of a charging point in the workplace. The company has to hire an installer approved by OLEV to qualify for the WCS grant. The grant was reduced from £500 to £350. But a company can claim discounts for a maximum of 40 charging points installed in all their company sites.
Eligibility for the WCS grant
A company willing to purchase and install EV chargers for its fleet and employees must satisfy a few requirements. Eligible entities for the scheme are public authorities, charities and businesses located in Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and England.
Businesses should submit VAT Registration Number or Companies House Reference Number, while charity organisations must show their Certificate of Registration issued by the Charity Commission. All applicants must submit proof that they have a dedicated off-street parking area for their exclusive use.
Applying for the WCS grant
Before a company can hire a professional installer, it must first apply for the WCS grant, which you can do online. The government requires the submission of the following:
- Company/business information
- Number of charging sockets for installation
- If applicable, complete a de minimis declaration
All eligible applicants will receive a voucher code via email, after which they can contact a WCS-approved installer.
Take advantage of the government discount offers as soon as you can, as the funds may be further reduced or removed from the next budget.