Sustainability in Action

EV charging: a road to affordable and clean energy

Jess Dixon

EV charging: a road to affordable and clean energy

In 2021, it was reported that there were 1.4 million electric vehicle charging points installed globally. It is believed that this figure rose to 2.3 million in 2022. That number is set to rise again, with the European Union setting ambitious targets to reach 3 million public charging points by 2030, and in the United States, 500,000 by the same deadline.

According to statistics, those 2.3 million charging stations service the approximate 16.5 million electric vehicles on our roads.

It’s no surprise to learn then that we’ve installed over 20 charging points at a number of Thorn and Zumtobel Group sites around the world, including Spennymoor (UK) and Lemgo (Germany).

This benefits both employees and visitors alike. For employees, having the ability to charge their personal car on-site during working hours can boost morale and improve job satisfaction by providing a convenient and eco-friendly benefit.

For customers and other site users, our chargers demonstrate a commitment to sustainability and environmental responsibility and, as for our employees, offers convenience.

Mark Helm, Quality Assurance & Lean Six Sigma Manager at the Spennymoor plant said, “We now have two Type 2 charging points at our manufacturing site, and a further two at our nearby distribution centre. They were installed two years ago after we noticed an increase in staff purchasing electric vehicles - we wanted to show practical support on our sustainability journey. More recently though, we’ve seen an increasing number of visitors arriving on site in electric vehicles. It’s an added bonus when they can charge on-site, instead of searching for a public charger elsewhere.”

The team in Lemgo were quick to respond to the electric vehicle trend by purchasing a fully electric Volkswagen ‘e-up!’ nearly eight years ago.

“Actually, considering how much EV technology has changed over the past few years, both the car and the electric car charger we installed at the Lemgo plant are quite old now,” explained Markus Schlingmann, Head of Integrated Management Systems. “We bought the car so that employees could utilise it in a working capacity. For example, if post needs delivering or if someone is attending a meeting locally, instead of using their own cars, they can take the shared electric car. A small but considered action to help reduce our impact on the environment.”

As a business, we’ve committed to relevant United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). UN SDG 7 focuses on ‘Affordable and Clean Energy’. Electric vehicles emit fewer greenhouse gases and air pollutants than traditional fuel types including petrol and diesel. According to the EDF energy website, “In over a year, just one electric car on the roads can save an average 1.5 million grams of CO2. That’s the equivalent of four return flights from London to Barcelona.” So – by installing electric car chargers at key locations around the world, we hope to support you – our employees, visitors and customers – with the appropriate infrastructure so that together, we can champion and encourage affordable and clean energy.