The only public fast charger for electric vehicles between the CBD and Torquay has been installed in Altona under Hobsons Bay council’s bid to be carbon neutral by next year.

The council is aiming for the community to produce zero net emmissions by 2030.

Mayor Jonathon Marsden said the 50kW DC fast charger at Hobsons Bay Civic Centre would be free to the public under a one-year trial.

“The charging station can charge a DC charge compatible vehicle in as little as 30-40 minutes, depending on the vehicle and its battery state, compared to a seven to eight hour charge time using a slower charger,” he said. “This will be the only high capacity electric vehicle fast charging station … between Torquay and the city, which will plug a major gap in our city’s electric vehicle support infrastructure, allowing motorists to top-up their vehicle as they travel across the western suburbs.”

The move follows a seven-year push by residents such as Williamstown’s Jeff Challis, who provides an electric vehicle charger to the public at his Yarraville business.

Mr Challis believes that providing free charging stations will encourage people to buy electric vehicles.

Bloomberg Energy Finance predicts electric and conventional vehicles will be similarly priced by 2025.

“As soon as you put something locally then people will take them up, and hopefully it’s going to help out with less pollutants in the air so it’s going to help everybody’s health,” Mr Challis said. “And obviously, they’re much quieter so less noise pollution.”

Other council initiatives include transitioning its fleet to electric vehicles, installing solar panels and building retrofits, LED streetlights and plans to source 30 per cent of its energy from Victorian renewables.

To use the charging station, motorists need to register via the Chargefox EV app.