The Chinese government is working hard to encourage the mass adoption of electric cars, but those cars will never catch on if there's no place to charge them.

The city government in Beijing hopes to address that problem with a new mandate that will massively expand the charging infrastructure in the Chinese capital.

Under the plan, new residential communities will be required to install charging stations at 18 percent of parking spaces, while the city itself will oversee the installation of 1,000 DC fast-charging stations this year, according to a report by Want China Times (via Charged EVs).

BYD e6 electric taxi in service in Shenzhen, China

BYD e6 electric taxi in service in Shenzhen, China

Officials hope the charging mandate will lead to consistent growth in the number of stations in residential areas. A lack of space and adequate grid capacity has made retrofitting older neighborhoods with stations difficult.

Meanwhile, the number of public charging stations will skyrocket. Beijing currently has around 60 public charging stations, and these are primarily used by buses and taxis.

While the new fast-charging stations may help curtail buyer resistance to electric cars, officials also hope they will keep those cabbies happy, and encourage others to switch to electric taxis.

Based on the trial program of BYD e6 electric taxis in Shenzhen, they believe a fleet could operate smoothly in Beijing as long as fast-charging stations are spaced 150-200 kilometers (93-124 miles) apart.

The effort to expand charging stations is the latest of many efforts enacted by Beijing to limit air pollution from vehicles.

Last year, the city announced a pollution tax on fuel. It also promised to remove 180,000 of the worst-polluting cars from its roads, while also slashing sales quotas for new cars.


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