The transition to electric vehicles (EVs) could create around 30,000 new jobs along with other economic benefits across the UK.
According to a new report by the University of Strathclyde’s Centre for Energy Policy and supported by SP Energy Networks (SPEN), if the investment in upgrading the network to allow a 99% EV uptake by 2050 in the UK was made, this would not only create tens of thousands of jobs but increase GDP by 0.16%.
Jobs would be created in the network, construction and service sector supply chains, with the average wages within these increasing by 0.1% thanks to the investment as well. Additional roles will be created in related areas as well, such as developers of bodywork and delivery drivers for EV companies.
Scott Mathieson, director of Network Planning and Regulation at SPEN, said the company’s work is “far more than just keeping the lights on.”
“Investing in EV infrastructure and adoption of EVs will help shift a post-COVID 19 economy onto a pathway for a green economic recovery.
“This robust analysis demonstrates why providing the right environment for greater investment in the infrastructure to support EVs now is so crucial to creating a much-needed economic stimulus and enabling the UK to meet Net Zero targets. By working together, we can help develop a better future, quicker.”
The report comes after it was revealed that 45% of young people consider sustainable sectors like the EV sector, offer more secure career paths and over half of young people want a job that helps to protect the planet.
Professor Karen Turner, director of the Centre for Energy Policy at the University of Strathclyde highlighted that the transport sector decarbonising will be key to the UK hitting its binding net zero by 2050 target.
“One of the key questions that remains for regulators and policy makers, is how and when the required infrastructure upgrades to the electricity networks will be invested and paid for, which will have important implications for just how the rollout more generally impacts across the wider economy.
“Our economic analysis shows that the switch to electric vehicles through to 2050 could ultimately deliver sustained benefits across the wider economy, with the extent and nature of gains depending very much on the economic and policy conditions.”
SP Energy Networks opened the first of 40 EV charging hubs being developed as part of Project PACE in August, in a move designed to accelerate the electrification of transport in Scotland.