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Ireland - Policies and Legislation

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In April 2009, the Minister for Communication Energy and Natural Resources announced the introduction of grant support of up to €5,000 for the purchase of Battery Electric Vehicles (BEVs) and up to €2,500 for the purchase of Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEVs) available from 2011 through 2012. The Government is offering these grants through Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI).The grant plan is cash limited and will operate on a "first come, first served" basis.

This support comes in addition to the zero vehicle registration tax (VRT) on BEVs and VRT relief of up to €2,500 for PHEVs announced by the Minister for Finance in his Budget Speech of December 2009.

SEAI has published a Buyers Guide and a Cost of Ownership Calculator to aid individuals interested in purchasing electric vehicles. SEAI has also published reports on Hybrid Electrical Vehicles and Battery Electric Vehicles. These reports highlight potential measures that could be used to stimulate uptake of electric vehicles in Ireland and make recommendations with regard to how this might be best achieved.

Highlights of policy- and legislation-related goals

  • Ten percent (10%) of all passenger cars will be electric by 2020.
  • The mandatory European Union (EU) Renewable Energy Supply Target (RES-T) legislation requires that 10% of all transport fuels will be renewable by 2020, which includes the gearing of renewable electricity content in EVs to reflect primary energy equivalence.
  • A €5,000 ($6,609) grant for plug-in hybrid EVs (PHEVs) and battery EVs (BEVs) is currently available.
  • Relief from paying the Vehicle Registration Tax is available in the amounts of €5,000 (USD $6,609) for BEVs and €2,500 (USD $3,305) for PHEVs.
  • Accelerated Capital Allowances are available to companies purchasing EVs.
  • A Charge Point Infrastructure program to install 1,500 on-street chargers and 30 fast chargers by the end of 2012 is under way.
  • An EV Customer Billing and Information Technology (IT) system that interfaces with existing electricity market regulations is presently undergoing testing; it will enable customers to have access to all electricity suppliers.
  • The parliament is currently (March 2012) considering new legislation that will enable Local Authorities to designate on-street parking spaces and charging point infrastructure as being for the exclusive use of electric vehicles.