A campaign to raise funds for an electric vehicle (EV) charging network from Perth to Esperance has been launched by the West Australian branch of Australian Electric Vehicle Association (AEVA).
The more densely-populated eastern seaboard of Australia has been the focus of a growing EV charging network in 2019, but key parts of the more sparsely populated southwest coastline of Australia has been neglected.
Supported by regional WA network provider Horizon Power, the new crowdfunding campaign aims to change this by linking the West Australian capital of Perth with the southwestern town via Brookton, Hyden and Ravensthorpe.
“One of the last hurdles to overcome is the lack of charging infrastructure in regional, rural and remote Australia, owing to the high upfront cost of charging equipment,” said AEVA secretary Chris Jones in a note by email.
“Fundraising is underway with a campaign goal of $350,000; enough to purchase and install at least four 50kW DC fast chargers between Perth and Esperance.”
To attract crowdfunders, a series of “perks” are being offered to those choosing to donate, starting from the basic “Lithium” level for $100.
Becoming a “Nickel” level donor for $1,000 will get funders listed on a plaque affixed to each charger, and a further “Cobalt” level offers free EV cahrging for a year from the opening of the new network.
A $5,000 “Foundation” donor will receive free charging along the highway for life, and the top $15,000 “Champion” level offers full branding, free charging for life and “endless community respect”.
“Electric vehicle DC fast chargers are expensive; $35,000 along with tens of thousands in installation costs; they remain out of reach for most small businesses,” says Jones.
“By collectively raising funds to install a network from Perth to Esperance, we can help take the pressure off businesses in preparing for the future of motoring.”
Those wishing to donate to the Perth to Esperance electric highway can visit the Chuffed.org project page here.
Bridie Schmidt is lead reporter for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She specialises in writing about new technology and has been writing about electric vehicles for two years. She has a keen interest in the role that zero emissions transport has to play in sustainability and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum.