European member states are now obliged to build refuelling points for clean fuels with common standards for their design and use.
Under new EU rules adopted today, nations will have to provide a minimum infrastructure for alternative fuels such as electricity, hydrogen and natural gas as well as a common plug for recharging electric vehicles.
Under the new “directive for the deployment of the alternative fuels infrastructure”, each member state has two years to draw up an alternative fuel deployment strategy.
The European Commission believes clean fuels have been held back by three main barriers – the high cost of vehicles, low level of consumer acceptance and the lack of recharging and refuelling stations.
Siim Kallas, Commissioner for Transport said: “Alternative fuels are key to improving the security of energy supply, reducing the impact of transport on the environment and boosting EU competitiveness.
“With these new rules, the EU provides long-awaited legal certainty for companies to start investing and the possibility for economies of scale.”
The deadlines for having the infrastructure in place range from 2020 to 2030, depending on the type of fuel, vehicle and area.