The Council of the Isles of Scilly has announced the launch of the GO-EV project, which will see the introduction of 10 ‘vehicle to grid’ (V2G) electric vehicles to be used as part of a car share scheme.
There will also be up to 10 solar canopies and 25 charging points around the islands.
V2G means that vehicle batteries will be able to discharge electricity back to the grid at times of high electricity demand, as well as be charged through locally generated renewable energy or from the grid when necessary.
The project is designed to test how this V2G technology can be used together with a car share scheme to give people a new choice in their travel options.
It is being funded by the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership, with £606,000 from Government’s Local Growth Fund and £2.4 million from the European Regional Development Fund, as part of the Smart Islands project.
Councillor Lady Marian Berkeley, Lead Member for Smart Islands, said: “The GO-EV project will further enhance the purity and quality of Scilly’s air and environment. At the same time, it will provide islanders with an increasing choice of on-island transport."
The network of electric vehicles will be made available on a pay-per-use car share basis to local residents and businesses on all five islands, with an initial trial taking place on St Mary’s.
There will be a mixture of cars and vans to suit different journey types and in time it is hoped the project will reduce the number of vehicles needed on the islands. As well as the vehicle charging points that will be dedicated to the car share scheme, further public chargers will be made available to those wishing to make the transition to electric vehicles but who do not have the possibility of charging their vehicle at home.
The project will be delivered in partnership with Hitachi Europe Ltd and the Isles of Scilly Community Venture CIC as part of the Smart Islands programme.
Jim Wrigley of the Community Venture said: “We are looking forward to working closely with the community on the design of the project to ensure that the locations and types of vehicles can be as useful as possible to residents and businesses.”
LEP Chief Executive Glenn Caplin said: “This project will blaze a trail in the development of smart energy systems in the UK. It will cut costs and carbon emissions, deliver clean growth and make the Isles of Scilly more competitive as part of a low carbon economy.”