There is a growing concern that local authority free charging stations are stopping commercial operators from entering the market. If EV drivers expect to recharge their batteries for nothing, why would commercial operators choose to invest their funds for no return?
Many businesses are becoming more concerned about their green image and install them for the P.R. benefits, much like installing solar and low impact plumbing facilities. Also in the case of stores and supermarkets the few pennies spent on power for the customer would most likely be offset by the items purchased while charging. I know that works with me. I have shopped at stores that I didn’t normally visit before I had an E.V. for the sole reason that they had a charging station.
This is one of the problems which we have in the UK, the fact that supermarkets are able to sell gasoline at rock bottom prices because they buy in bulk, customers fill up when they visit the store and they spend money in the store.
If supermarkets are able to dominate the commercial electric car charging industry I fear we will have similar problems.