Highways to have battery charge ports every 25kms

electric car

An electric car at a charging station.

Photo credit: Pool

Public charging stations will be located every 25kilometers on major highways, the Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (Epra) said in new guidelines of battery charging for electric vehicles (EVs).

“At least one charging station should be available in a grid of three kilometers by three kilometers. Additionally, one charging station shall be set up at every 25 Km on both sides of highways/roads” the regulator said.

The regulator said that for long-range EVs such as sports utility vehicles and heavy-duty vehicles such as buses and trucks, there would be at least one fast-charging station with appropriate charging infrastructure at every 100 Km, one on each side of the highways or road.

“Within cities, such charging facilities for heavy-duty EVs shall be located within bus stops. The swapping facilities are also not mandatory within cities for buses or trucks” Epra said.

Charging stations have been granted a preferential power tariff of Sh16 per kilowatt-hour (kWh) for peak hours and Sh8 off-peak by Kenya Power as the utility positions itself to cash in on the growing uptake of EVs in Kenya to boost its electricity sales.

Kenya Power has previously estimated that an average minibus operating in Nairobi would use electricity of about Sh2,400 each day and that it can charge 50,000 buses and 2 million motorcycles each day.

The EV market in Kenya is growing as more investors express interest in this market segment.

For instance, several public service vehicle companies in Nairobi have acquired fleets of EVs while Kenya Power less than a fortnight invited bids for a supply of EV pick-ups and motorcycles for use at one of its yards in Nairobi.

Majority State-owned KenGen also recently unveiled four EVs – which include two SUVs and two double-cabin pickups - to primarily be used for data collection and policy development.

The company said it would use the cost and environmental data from the four EVs to transition its fleet to EVs.

The Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) listed firm has two EV charging stations in Nairobi and Naivasha and plans to roll out about 30 EV charging stations in major cities across the country.