The next item on our agenda is questions to the Assembly Commission. The first question is from Simon Thomas.
1. What steps is the Commission taking to promote travelling to the Assembly in electric vehicles? OAQ(5)0004(AC)
I thank the Member for his question. I would like to say that, following on from my response to your question on this matter in October, I am pleased to confirm that arrangements are in hand for two charging points to be installed on the estate. These will utilise a pay-as-you-go card/keyfob payment system that will allow for charging of electric vehicles on site and an easy payment scheme for the user. Once it is in place, we will promote knowledge of the facility amongst Members and staff. We hope that this provision will encourage the use of electric vehicles.
I thank the Commissioner for her reply, and I welcome very much the development and the response to earlier questions on this, and the fact that we will shortly have charging points for electric vehicles in the Assembly. Battery technology is not quite there for the battery that takes me from Aberystwyth to the Assembly in one go yet, but I think it’s almost there. I think it is important as well that we send a very clear statement of our sustainability principles and that we welcome all forms of sustainable transport to the Assembly. I look forward, therefore, and would like confirmation from the Commissioner that this will be available to both staff and Assembly Members, and also visitors.
I’d like to thank the Member again for asking about the electric vehicles. I’d like to say that we will need to go through the proper procurement process, and this is going to take some time. But following the survey that was sent out in February, there was a more positive response to electric vehicles, and we have responded affirmatively. I’d like to say that we are hoping and being positive that this would be completed by the summer—the charging bays—but we obviously have to allow time for contingencies. Thank you.
I welcome the introduction of the two charging points on the Assembly estate. Could you elucidate whether or not this would be exclusively on the National Assembly site here in Cardiff, or whether there might be other charging points on other parts of the National Assembly’s estate up in north Wales? Because, like Simon Thomas said, one of the major problems is that it’s not possible to get from south Wales to north Wales because there aren’t sufficient charging points to enable you to get there.
I thank the Member for her question. I’d like to say that, at the moment, we are looking just at two charging points in Tŷ Hywel, but obviously, we’ll see the success of this, and we’re interested in looking at this positively and reducing the carbon emissions footprint. We want to progress with this idea, so with progression I would anticipate that we would be looking at other sites.