Supporting the expansion of the infrastructure for electric mobility in Upper Carniola

Gorenjska has been intensively trying to establish sustainable mobility in recent years. In addition to planning, i.e. park and ride systems, calming down traffic in settlements, encouraging cycling through the creation of e-bike sharing systems and promoting walking, municipalities are increasingly investing in the construction of a e-charging infrastructure for charging electric cars, buying electric vehicles for business use and technical e-vehicles, and encouraging concessionaire for public passenger road transport to purchase environmentally friendly public transport vehicles. In the center of Kranj, passengers are transported for free by electric mini bus and since last year, the hybrid bus has been included in the bus fleet for the transport of passengers, the same as this year in the Municipality of Jesenice. Through the national tender for the Climate Change Fund, the Triglav National Park acquired 15 electric vehicles, Komunala Bled, the public service company for drinking water and waste water management and waste management, has 3 electric vehicles, the municipality of Bohinj and Bled one.

The director of the Regional Development Agency of Gorenjska – BSC Kranj, Rok Šimenc, said that the Council of the Gorenjska region, which consists of 18 mayors of Gorenjska municipalities, on 14 February 2017, supported the initiative for the preparation of the Regional Action Plan for e-Mobile Infrastructure in Gorenjska. Since then, many activities have been carried out in the region, both within the framework of international projects, the Regional Development Arrangement, the Local Action Group Gorenjska Basket, …

The greatest progress is reflected in the establishment of an electric charging infrastructure. Currently there are 40 public electric charging stations in Gorenjska. Even more are planned. However, there are differences between the municipalities in planning. In the second half of 2018, the Regional Development Agency of the Gorenjska region – BSC Kranj prepared the Regional Action Plan for the expansion of e-charging Infrastructure for the period 2019-2023 and beyond. The contribution to the Action Plan was given by 9 municipalities: the Municipality of Kranj, the Municipality of Bled, the Municipality of Bohinj, the Municipality Cerklje na Gorenjskem, the Municipality of Jesenice, the Municipality of Radovljica, the Municipality of Kranjska Gora, the Municipality of Žirovnica and the Municipality of Žiri and Gorenjske elektrarne Ltd and BSC Kranj. The action plan contains 21 measures to promote the spread of e-mobile infrastructure and e-mobility. In the future, we can expect, in addition to the number of public electric charging stations for charging e-vehicles, also more hybrid and electric vehicles for passenger transport, e-vehicles for business purposes, investments in modernization of the electric grid to support the installation of new electric charging stations, utilization of national and European funds for the development of e-mobility and mobility on other alternative sources of fuel, diffusion of knowledge about e-mobility and the management of e-charging infrastructure and more promotion and awareness about e-mobility.

The preparation of the Action Plan was co-funded by the European funds of the Alpine Space Program in the e-Mobility transnational strategy for an interoperable community and Networking in the Alpine Space (e-MOTICON) project. The project involved 15 partners from 6 European countries and 41 observers from partner countries and Switzerland, including the Jesenice and Radovljica municipalities and the Ministry of Infrastructure.

In addition to the regional action plan, the most prominent results of a transnational project that will affect the Gorenjska region and Slovenia in the near or distant future also include:
• A Transnational Strategy for the Alpine Space, which addresses the expansion of the charging infrastructure network for electric vehicles, the management and methods of e-charging services;
• The e-MOTICON guidelines, which are a brief summary of the practical findings, conclusions and recommendations for the public administration for the design, establishment and management of e-mobile infrastructure;
• White Book e-MOTICON – an Alpine Space strategy on innovative design of electric charging stations with summaries of action plans of partner areas;
• Two pilot activities carried out in the Gorenjska region and upcoming online education for municipalities on the possibilities and challenges associated with the electric charging infrastructure, including many examples of good practices; and
• signatures of a letter of support and a Memorandum of Understanding by Mayors of the Municipalities of Gorenjska and other regional stakeholders to promote, implement and manage infrastructure for e-charging electric vehicles.

These pilot activities were carried out in Italy, Germany, Austria, France and Slovenia – in the Gorenjska and Goriška development regions. Regional Development Agency of Gorenjska – BSC Kranj has established a regional website for the promotion of e-mobility (http://e-mobilitygorenjska.si/en/e-mobility/). The second pilot activity co-financed by the transnational project was carried out by the BSC Kranj and Gorenjske Elektrarne. Gorenjske Elektrarne technically equipped and connected 10 electric charging stations in Gorenjska, thus enabling them to control their operation and consumption. The establishment of a back office co-financed by EU funds to manage the network of electric charging stations is the basis for efficient operation of electric charging stations, the introduction of a charging system and payment services. Gorenjske Elektrarne, on its own initiative, expanded its activities with its own investment and, in addition to technical upgrades, equipped electric charging stations with bilingual instructions for use and established a telephone help line. The Gorenjska network of 10 electric charging stations, owned by Elektro Gorenjska, joined the Celje network of electric charging stations and the Elektro Ljubljana network. In the aforementioned project, Elektro Gorenjska acts as a regional distributor providing electrical infrastructure, while the Gorenjske Elektrarne are involved in the installation of electric charging stations, operating back office and other activities.

A Letter of Support and a Memorandum of Understanding on the expansion of infrastructure for charging electric vehicles are protocol documents that oblige mayors and other stakeholders to undertake actions and, or to support the diffusion of electric mobility. The signatories of the Memorandum of Understanding agree to identify the best possible public administration roles in planning a transnational and interoperable network for charging electric vehicles, setting minimum rules for setting up an interoperable e-charging infrastructure in line with European standards, improving existing infrastructure, adopting an integrated, transnational cartographic tool , which states the available infrastructure of electric charging stations, strengthen communication between public administrations as a fundamental means for quality results and provide synergies between private and public transport in integrated spatial planning. So far, the Memorandum of Understanding has been signed by 16 mayors from the municipalities of Bled, Bohinj, Gorje, Jesenice, Jezersko, Kranjska Gora, the municipalities of Kranj, Naklo, Radovljica, Preddvor, Škofja Loka, Šenčur, Tržič, Železniki, Žiri and Žirovnica, Elektro Gorenjska and Gorenjska power plants, Tourism Bled, Tourism Bohinj and Regional Development Agency of Gorenjska – BSC Kranj. In addition to the signatories of the Memorandum, the letter of support is also signed by the Municipality of Cerklje na Gorenjskem.

 

Statement by the President of the Management Board Elektro Gorenjska, PhD. Ivan Simon, MBA

The Elektro Gorenjska Group, consisting of Elektro Gorenjska, Gorenjske elektrarne and GEK Maintenance, is and will be an important link in the development of e-mobility in the Gorenjska region. We are already providing the highest possible level of reliable and high-quality electricity supply.

Nevertheless, electrification of traffic for the distribution network is a great challenge. With the use of an increasing number of electric vehicles and consequently their charging with electricity, the peaks of the electricity distribution system will increase extensively. This will require a lot of additional investments from us, distribution companies, to ensure an adequate energy infrastructure.

The goal set by the companies in the Elektro Gorenjska Group is the establishment of a flexible distribution network using advanced technologies that will meet the upcoming market demands and / network users.

In the companies in the Elektro Gorenjska Group, we have been actively involved in the development and installation of electrical charging infrastructure for many years. We own 10 charging stations for e-cars, which were set up in the framework of the European project for the provision of interoperability in the Alpine Space – e-MOTICON, and thus the promotion of the use of e-vehicles. At the same time, we produce pure and green energy without CO2 emissions by hydro and solar power plants. Electricity is produced locally and, in this way, we ensure optimum use of energy in the region, both from an economic point of view and from an ecological point of view.

The development of e-mobility represents a great challenge for the Elektro Gorenjska Group and at the same time it is an opportunity to take advantage of our engineering potential and by implementing the most up-to-date solutions, we enable the fastest transition to a low-carbon society.

 

Statement by the Mayor of the Municipality of Žiri, MSc. Janez Žakelj

In Žiri, we are aware of the importance of maintaining a clean environment. Last year, we adopted the Integrated Transport Strategy, where the most vulnerable groups in traffic, pedestrians and cyclists are placed in the forefront. We are aware that it is important to develop sustainable mobility and increase the use of green energy. We have outlined the guidelines that will follow in the coming years to continue reducing the burden on our environment. Among other things, we are participating in a larger project titled “E-simply on a bike”, linking five local action groups in Gorenjska. In the project, we will place electric chargers, service pillars throughout the region, deliver some electric bikes and organize additional activities related to e-cycling awareness. We also agreed on the installation of electric charging stations for electric cars in Žiri.