Jolt has partnered with Ausgrid in a world-first initiative to transform existing Ausgrid streetside kiosks into free electric vehicle (EV) charging stations.

The first EV charging station has just opened in Sydney’s Mona Vale, with plans for further kiosks to be rolled out across Sydney including Strathfield, Randwick, Hornsby and the Northern Beaches.

Rob Amphlett Lewis, Chief Customer Officer, Ausgrid, said the program to convert existing streetside “green boxes” to also double as charging stations was going to help push Sydney into greater EV take-up.

“We’re using existing, essential electrical infrastructure on the street to provide a free service for the community and hopefully help accelerate the transition to electric vehicles in Australia,” he said.

Electric vehicle drivers will need to download the Jolt app to access 7kWh for free once per day, which takes around 15 minutes to charge. Users looking for more than 7kWh can pay for further energy via the app.

Doug McNamee, CEO, Jolt, said the network of free fast charging sites will save drivers around $1,000 per year.

“JOLT’s partnership with Ausgrid helps solve the major barriers affecting the uptake of EVs including access to charging, cost and range anxiety.

“In the last 12 months, EV ownership has skyrocketed, almost doubling to 23,000 new registrations, representing the second year in a row where the total number of electric vehicles has almost doubled. Now, more than ever, Australians are gearing up for an EV revolution,” McNamee said.

“Innovative projects like this are the future of energy. They give our customers access to renewable energy choices and incentivise electric vehicle use which is a key step in the transition towards cleaner transport options.”

Jolt plans to roll out 500 charging kiosks across the Ausgrid network.

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