The Path Forward for Electric Vehicles in Australia
ClimateWorks Australia recently compiled a document outlining how electric vehicles (EVs) were tracking in Australia, and what we might do to encourage a more rapid transition to electrified mobility. The Australian Electric Vehicle Association made a contribution to the document, along with many other stakeholders and representative bodies in the transport, energy and regulatory sectors. The document was submitted to Federal Parliament last week, and is available here to download:
Two key points emerged from the report:
One was that emissions accounting and reporting for the EV fleet is currently inadequate, and should be more comprehensive. EVs will play a critical role in reducing global CO2 emissions, especially when coupled with time of use tariffs, renewable energy installations and organisational fleet arrangements. When considering current and future CO2 emissions from the transport sector, the rapid and exponential growth in EV sales must be factored into any forward modeling.
The other was that increasing demand for EVs is very simple - foster the economic and logistical conditions which make the switch to EVs compelling. This can be done in many ways, ranging from changes to vehicle licensing and insurance, co-funding EV charging infrastructure, government and corporate fleet purchasing, and changes to taxation schemes around motor vehicles.
The AEVA has long believed that a shift to electrified vehicle transport was not only inevitable, but very achievable, provided the right policies were in place to help make this transition. Australia does not currently have any clear plan to make the shift, but as this ClimateWorks submission highlights, such a plan is essential. Our contribution to this comprehensive document helps make this case, and we look forward to follow-up discussions with our elected representatives in parliament.
But there's more we can do. The AEVA insists that our members, and non-members alike, should write to their local MP, as well as the Minister for Transport, Minister for Resources and Energy and Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science, and point them towards the findings of this report, and any others which make the case for EVs in Australia. State governments are largely responsible for transport matters, so make sure they hear from you too.
When energy for transport contributes such a massive proportion of our terms of trade, we have both an economic and a security imperative to move towards a far more sustainable solution. Electrification is clearly part of that solution.