Independent Federal Member for Indi, Helen Haines is the latest in a growing list of politicians to jump in the driver’s seat of a Tesla Model 3. This is the latest in a series of videos from Daniel Bleakly (@DanielBleakley), who started the Coal Miners Driving Teslas channel on YouTube.
What started as acceleration reaction videos is now turning into a great series of videos that showcase the future of transport – electric vehicles, to the decision makers of our nation.
Senators Rex Patrick, Malcolm Roberts, Hanson-Young are among the previous politicians who have experienced the Tesla Model 3 Performance, but the latest with Independent MP, Helen Haines is a video with a difference. While the others were visibly impressed with the car’s acceleration, this time around, the conversation in the car got interesting when Haines talked about EV charging as an opportunity for the region.
Out here in rural Australia, we see a great big opportunity to have lots of charging stations along the way, to give people the invitation to come touring in an electric vehicle out on the back roads of our region.
Up in the Towong Shire, which is just North from here, Towong Shire councilors are really working hard to get electric charging stations along one of the beautiful touring routes, the upper river road up there and we want to see charging places all around the place, because we know this is the future and we want to make sure people come to our region and holiday here, so really important to us.
You can watch the full 26 minute video below which does a great job of capturing this beautiful part of the world, part of the reason why techAU HQ is located in Albury Wodonga.
The Indi electorate encompasses Wodonga, home to around 45,000 people, Wangaratta at around 30,000 and many surrounding towns, which combine for a total population of more than 112,809. These people and businesses within Indi, will need to come along the journey of transitioning to electric vehicles and having the necessary charging infrastructure to support that change is critical.
To date, we’ve been incredibly lucky to have a 6-bay Tesla Supercharger located in the center of Wodonga since 2015, while a 2x 350kW + 2x 50kW Chargefox location at Barnawartha North. From there, charging options are few and far between, there’s a 4-bay Tesla Supercharger at Ovens, or another Tesla Supercharger (6-bay) and Chargefox site located at Euroa.
Outside of these charging options, we really lack any serious curbside charging. There’s no public fast-charging infrastructure available at supermarkets, or large retailers like Bunnings. At best, there’s some destination charging at wineries and motels, but we need more, a lot more.
After seeing how positive Haines is about electric vehicles, I hope we really can get some momentum behind charging in regional Victoria, as the number of EVs continues to grow.
Last week, the Victorian Government announced a $5 million package to expand fast-charging in the state, expected to deliver around 100 additional charging stations.
The Government’s support for public charging infrastructure will help meet Victoria’s target that 50 per cent of all new car sales be zero emission vehicles by 2030, putting us on track to halve Victoria’s carbon emissions by 2030.
The breakdown of grants includes:
- up to $4 million to support the installation of EV fast-chargers (11 kW – 100 kW fast-chargers) in regional priority towns and locations; and
- up to $1 million for the installation of EV fast-chargers (11 kW – 100 kW fast-chargers) at metropolitan destinations.
It would be wise for all local councils to apply for these grants and get electric vehicle charging infrastructure in place to capitalise on the benefits Haines highlighted in the video.