Electric vehiclesRoad Pricing

New Law Means Road Pricing Is Unjustified

By 4th January 2022 January 7th, 2022 4 Comments

On 30th June 2022 The Electric Vehicles (Smart Charge Points) Regulations come into force (1). All home installed electric vehicle chargers will be required to be separately metered and send this information to the Smart meter data communications network.

Potentially this legislation allows the electricity used for charging EVs to be charged and taxed at a higher rate than domestic electricity. The technology enacted also enables the rationing of electricity for EV charging because the government can decide when and if an EV can be charged, plus it also allows the EV battery to be drained into the grid if required.

This legislation does not apply to public or rapid charge points, but there is no reason why electricity consumed via these charge points can’t be taxed.

ABD Spokesman Paul Biggs said: “Governments have been very keen on introducing a punitive system of road pricing since 2007 when the ABD played a key campaigning role (2) in helping to defeat the unpopular plans of the Blair government. Electric vehicles have provided a new impetus for road pricing, but there are cost-effective alternative ways of taxing EVs for road use including a weight-based VED or VED based on kWhr battery size. This new legislation provides a neat answer to the problem of taxing EVs for road use although the law also has some potentially sinister implications.”

The ABD remains opposed to road pricing, which has always been intended to be more about the intrusive and regressive pricing of cars off the roads rather than providing a fair taxation system.

ENDS

Notes for Editors

(1) The Electric Vehicles (Smart Charge Points) Regulation 2021:

https://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2021/1467/contents/made

(2) April 2007 – The ABD gives an exclusive road pricing story to The Telegraph, which embarrassed the government: Road charges equipment introduced by stealth:

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1547899/Road-charges-equipment-introduced-by-stealth.html

4 Comments

  • Nathan says:

    Could also be used to change less or zero. Could be avoided by turning off WiFi, so unlikely to come into force.
    Doesn’t seem a well considered interpretation of the regulations, to be honest.

    • Alister Watt says:

      ‘Smart’ electricity and gas meters do not need to use Wi-Fi as they use one of the old GSM mobile phone networks. That network is difficult for one to switch off, but it is possible to block those signals, however the Wireless Telegraphy Act (1949) will offer you a £100 fine or 6 months for doing that (it’s probably a lot more nowadays).
      The Treasury is facing a £4bn (insert large random number!) shortfall due to a lack of both road fund licences and fuel duty so they will no doubt ultimately end up either charging motorists per mile as measured by GPS or by kWh as measured by this smart meter, or maybe both ;-(

  • Tony Duke says:

    This is a pretty terrible interpretation of the new legislation that I assume is just designed to put people off buying an EV? It doesn’t say anywhere that new Smart Chargers will be separately metered, or that they will send this data to the Smart Meter communications network, it simply says they must be able to be connected to a network so that the owner (not any electricity suppliers or the government) can view the usage. Don’t get me wrong they will find a way to tax EV’s at some stage but this is not it!

  • Simon says:

    Regardless of the smart chargers ability to connect to the existing home smart meter the system is likely to be able to achieve the desired result on its own.
    Even if it were not able to communicate the data in a “pay as you go” type model the statue explicitly states:

    9.—(1) A relevant charge point must be configured so that on each occasion it is used, it measures or calculates—
    (a)the electricity it has imported or exported (as the case may be), such measurement or calculation to be in watt-hours or kilowatt-hours;

    (2) A relevant charge point must be configured in a way which enables the owner of the relevant charge point to view the information referred to in paragraph (1) by reference to—
    (b)any month within the preceding 12 months;
    (c)the entirety of the preceding 12 month period.

    This provides the means to simply log onto a DVSA portal like is currently done for road tax and be able to input the usage for the chosen monthly or yearly period.

    The drive to road pricing is not about providing a fair system, it is about extending government control into every aspect of life.
    The House of Commons Committee report talks more about how it can be used to link to your insurance and change driver behaviour that about meeting the revenue shortfall, Quoting from the document “can use price as a lever for change”, it is clear that any system implemented would use punitive taxation to decide for you, when and where you can afford to travel.

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