A fully operational Shell service station in Fulham, West London could soon be entirely replaced by electric vehicle chargers, making it the first to do so in the UK.
It’s another signal that the shift to electric vehicles is well underway, and follows hot on the heels of the UK announcement last week to bring forward a ban on new petrol and diesel car sales to 2035.
Similar changes are already underway in Norway and the US, where fuel pumps have been ripped out in favour of EV chargers in preparation for a transition to electric vehicles.
The EV-only hub, for which a planning application will be submitted by the end of February, will consist of 10 150kW DC fast chargers situated under solar panel canopies complete with flower beds.
“We’re looking at the next evolution and the needs of our customers in the broader sense,”Shell UK general retail manager Bernie Williamson was quoted as saying by Forecourt Trader.
“We’re doing nature-based solutions, giving motorists the opportunity to do something about their carbon footprint as we continue to invest and ramp up long-term solutions of electric vehicle charge posts for those people when they’re ready to move to EV transportation.
“We’re ideally placed for that – we have a fantastic network where over 75% of the population are within 15 minutes of a Shell service station.”
The announcement comes as Shell installed its 50th EV charger in the UK and the first 150kW charger at a service station.
The welcoming, eco-friendly environment will be complimented with a convenience with grass roof where drivers can spend some time relaxing while their electric vehicles “top up”.
By the end of 2020, Shell plans to have installed a total of 70 charging sites with a view to as many as 200 by the end of 2021.
“We’re trying to look at customer demand, and trying to be slightly ahead of that demand. There’s big demand in the cities, and then it will be the joining up of the cities,” said Williamson.
“In London our busiest site is in Holloway where we have two chargers, handling about 200 customer visits a month. We’ve started with 50kW posts, but are gradually moving to 150kW.
“Our charge posts are supplied by 100% renewable electricity – so by definition if you’re an EV driver and you’re charging up at Shell, you’re driving carbon neutral,” said Williamson.
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.