The GreenCharge research and development project was initiated by BTH and some other partners in Småland and Blekinge, including CGI, Miljöfordon Syd and Energy Agency Southeast. BTH was appointed to lead the growing consortium from 2011 to 2015. In Autumn 2015 BTH left the project to focus more broadly on research for accelerated sustainability transformation of transport and energy systems. At this time the GreenCharge consortium leadership was passed on to Miljöfordon Syd. The GreenCharge project grew out of a cooperation between the industry, counties and municipalities in Blekinge, Norra Skåne, Småland and Öland. The first phase of GreenCharge aimed to identify necessary conditions for a market breakthrough for electric vehicles in the Southeast region of Sweden. The focus was on customer service (easy, accessible and cost efficient) which enable the project to identify success factors and the elimination of barriers so it becomes natural for consumers to invest in electric vehicles. Through the participating municipalities, a first test fleet of electric vehicles and a regional network of infrastructure was created. Exchange of experience together with analytic and practical tests of economical, technical and environmental consequences
More specifically, GreenCharge phase 1 had the following aims by 2015:
- A demonstration of a functioning and sustainable regional test fleet and infrastructure for electric vehicles. (300 new electric vehicles and 200 new charging points
- Well-functioning and expansive regional business models as a base for a sustainable electric transportation system.
- A validated cost-efficient and user friendly analysis and research method to identify probable sustainability consequences of developing and introducing transport systems with many stakeholders.
- An overall roadmap for the development and distribution of a sustainable and profitable electric transportation system as a part of a fossil free transport vehicle fleet by 2030.
Unique Strengths of GreenCharge phase 1:
- A University as lead partner due to the proven cross-sector cooperation ability of BTH and to ensure that the lead partner can be seen as competition neutral.
- A new geographic and demographic focus on small town regions outside of the major cities.
- Practical system demonstrations guided by world class strategic sustainability research. BTH brings its award winning sustainability approach that has been developed for 20 years with The Natural Step and in close cooperation with other academia and industry. The aim is to make a road map for how the project’s 3 year demonstration experiment could lead to a sustainable and affordable scale-up of electric vehicle systems – as part of a fossil free vehicle fleet by 2030.
- An unprecedented regional mobilization that has led to the biggest project in Sweden. All 4 governors and regional and county authorities, 26 municipalities, about 30 companies including Ikea, AB Volvo, Renault, CGI, and local energy companies and car dealers.
Text by Henrik Ny.