Can things only get better for our environment?

It is good news for our extraordinary district’s environment.

Folkestone & Hythe District Council have more publicly available electric vehicle charging points across the district than any other council, according to data published by the Department of Transport on May 4 2023.

As the data shows our Council has 16.66% of all Electric Vehicle Charging points, or 129 of them dotted around the district.

Since Oct 2019, there has been a 416% increase in electric vehicle charging points in our district alone, according to the DfT data. However, the Council say there are 132 electric vehicle charging points, across 26 different locations in the district

According to the Council fees and charges, April 2023 – April 2024, there is no charge for topping up an electric car. However, in Report Number C/20/37 states:  

That charges of 25p per kWh (minimum of £2.50) be applied to all units to cover the cost of electricity usage and credit/debit card charges when the new charge points are installed.

That charges be reviewed annually in line with council’s fees and charges policy.

Strange that there is an absence of the cost of electricity usage to charge an electric vehicle in the fees and charges documents 2023/24. 

But it’s not all good news.

To believe electric vehicles pose no problems to the environment, one has to think again. As our public face pointed out during his election campaign, car tyres produce vastly more particulate matter pollution, PM2.5 an PM10, than exhausts. The increasing weight of cars means more particulate matter is being thrown off by tyres as they wear on the road, and electric vehicles weigh more than petrol vehicles.

Using an example of a Volvo XC40 the petrol version weighs 1,610kg (3549.4 lbs) unladen. Its electric equivalent weighs 2,023kg (4460 lbs) unladen, or 25% more.  So it will produce more particulate matter which is dangerous to us all.

We are not suggesting people give up there cars, electric or otherwise. What we are suggesting is that they use them less. But how does one nudge people in that direction?

Well the answer lies in the Council’s transport policy; which is twelve years old, and was used to inform the Sept 2020, adopted places and policies local plan. This needs a serious refresh. Such a refresh could be undertaken using what our public face and the Greens called “citizens’ assemblies”, and Labour called “Citizens’ Juries”, in their manifestos. 

We need to go greener and in doing so we cannot harm local business and residents going about there business. So engaging with them in a new and different way, rather than the bog standard consultation; which the previous administration used as a tick box exercise, would be proof positive of their intentions of engaging with residents and business.

Engaging citizens on an issue as important as a transport policy is crucial, as it affects all the residents of the district. If this new administration is to take people with it, in transitioning to a better, cleaner environment, a refresh of the transport policy would be a good place to start.

We do not need a council who does things to us, but rather a council that does things with us. The opportunity is there for them to prove they wish to do things differently from the Tories, and in the process, give people fresh agency and hope for the future.

Lets hope they’ll take this opportunity to prove their election pledges were not hollow promises. And show that things can only get better for residents across our extraordinary district.

The Shepway Vox Team

Dissent is NOT a Crime




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5 Comments on Can things only get better for our environment?

  1. Of course it can only get better ….. Monk has gone

  2. This new administration could get off to great start by saying that Otterpool Garden Town is scrapped with immediate effect. Also now the Greens are the largest party return Princes Parade to what it was before Monk ruined it. He received his just desserts by losing his seat for that.

    • @Colin

      Greens have always been prepared to trade the farmland at Otterpool Park to protect their former landfill site at Princes Parade, I see no reason to expect them to change tune now.

      • Colin // May 7, 2023 at 19:23 //

        That’s diabolical. There is no comparison between the racecourse land and Princes Parade They want to build 8,500 houses on the racecourse . Nothing like that on Princes Parade. Certainly wouldn’t vote Green ever again if that were true as you suggest

  3. Colin, Google Shepway Green Party Otterpool Garden Town.

    On 23 April of this year they made it plain they would not stop the development.

    Presumably none of them live in the area due to the fact it will be blighted by development.

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