In its World Energy Outlook, the International Energy Agency identifies pathways for clean energy technological solutions needed to reach global carbon neutrality (i.e. net zero GHG emissions) by 2050. It also details interim goals that will ensure the world is on the path to carbon neutrality. In order to achieve these goals, global electric vehicle sales need to increase from <3% of new vehicle sales to 50% by 2030.
Increased awareness of fossil fuels' effect on the planet, and the universal imperative for all nations across the planet to act on climate NOW to reduce GHGs, has driven many countries around the world to implement policies encouraging electric and hybrid vehicles. The sales of electric vehicles (EVs) have increased globally, with EVs, including 100% EVs and plug-in hybrid EVs; and now account for for over 2.5 million vehicles annually.
Over 90 million vehicles (internal combustion engine - ICE - vehicles, EVs, and hybrids included) are manufactured worldwide each year. Globally, China produces over 1 in 4 vehicles (of all the world's vehicles and of all types) annually; and almost another 1/3 of vehicles in the world are manufactured in - the United States, Japan, Germany (with the U.S. producing more than Japan, and Japan's vehicle production a bit higher than Germany), along with India and Mexico (all of these countries combined produce roughly 1/3 of the world's vehicles). The remaining auto manufacturing representing over 1/3 of the global vehicle market is done in other countries, most significantly South Korea. Even with all of these countries contributing to manufacturing EVs, EVs still only account for less than 3% of vehicle manufacturing globally (mostly in the form of electric and plug-in hybrid light duty passenger cars and trucks).
The global reliance on the automobile results in a rapid increase in carbon dioxide emissions. Climate change has disrupted the entire atmospheric setting of the planet, causing global warming and extreme weather such as floods, increased seas levels, heat waves, droughts, hurricanes, and more storms; all of which in turn affects food production, human health, and our general well being. EVs and hybrids are a cost-effective, efficient way to fight climate change (while consumers get a superior product) - see The Benefits of Hybrids, Plug-in Hybrids, and Electric Vehicles.
Ten Countries promoting Electric Cars and Hybrids
written by Eseandre
Norway is first on our list because its government is in full support of cleaning the atmosphere and creating sustainable energy for its citizens; especially with regard to EVs. Norway has substantial tax incentives for EV buyers/ owners. Norway has built an extensive EV infrastructure, with ubiquitous, often free, EV charging; and Norway further incentivizes EVs with dedicated, free EV parking spots with charging included, as well as entire EV garages dedicated to these perks, and free use of bus/ carpool lanes for EVs. The entire country of Norway plans for carbon neutrality by 2030, and that new car sales should be entirely zero emission vehicles by 2025. The sales of EVs in Norway has gone up to over half of new vehicle sales (when plug-in hybrids are also considered). EV customers and owners in Norway enjoy incentives such tax exemptions for EV purchases, free parking spot, and free charging - incentives aimed to get others interested and invested in the transition to an all-EV society. Oslo, Norway is even considering a complete ban of fossil fuel-based vehicles from its city center.
Even with the yellow vest event just passing by, the sales of electric cars in France have gone up 111%. Paris is aiming to ban all cars except electric vehicles by 2030 in the city, and in the country there will be a similar ban by 2040. In the bid to reduce GHGs and air pollution, Emmanuel Macron government has offered incentives in the cost of EVs, and plans to increase charging ports to 100,000 by the year 2020.
The UK has declared it will be fully electric car compliant by 2040; and the UK has also passed a nationwide law to ban traditional ICE car sales by 2030. Although the government is thriving hard to be a major force with the zero emission ambitions for the country, and the congestion charge in London, the structure to sustain the use of EVs, and plug-in cars are still not in place, and the government needs to fix that for the program to be a success. However, the UK is home to some of the best brands of electric and plug-in cars.
China is the largest producer of fossil fuel vehicles globally, but with the country's moves towards clean energy and sustainability, China is at the forefront of producing electric and hybrid cars, trucks, and buses. Sales of EVs in China climb higher as the need for clean energy and GHG reduction nationwide remain a priority.
Sales of EVs and hybrid vehicles have increased in the United States by over 25% annually since 2016; with even greater increases seen in the U.S. EV market recently, in large part thanks to Tesla. When discussing EVs and America, one immediately thinks of Tesla, the auto manufacturer based in Palo Alto CA. Tesla is the #1 manufacturer of EVs worldwide. Tesla car sales have increased by 280% annually over the last year in the United States, and by over 138% worldwide, now claiming sales of around 250,000 cars worldwide annually, most of them in the United States.
Electric cars and hybrids have flooded the streets of Germany. Germany will have more than a million EVs on city streets in the country in a couple of years. Germany is known for its financial incentives for buyers of German EVs and hybrids, and over 30 makes of German EVs in the country.
Brazil is second on our list, not just for a country that uses electric cars, but for being among the pioneers of pushing for renewable energy in all facet of its economy. As the Brazilian government implements the idea of EV, we are seeing more industrial and residential sectors combining to sell the impact of greenhouse gas and how we can change it. Since the gradual introduction of EVs in Brazil, the emission rate is reducing as both electric cars, and fuel cell vehicle is seen on the streets. The country also uses cleaner fuel alternatives such as ethanol blends and biomass.
Please see our article on Curitiba for more on this city in Brazil, and Curitiba's successful use of hybrid vehicles in sustainable mass transit systems.
The Netherlands has set a target for itself that only emission-free vehicles will be allowed on the streets by 2030.The government of the Netherlands will subsidize the sales of electric vehicles beginning in 2021. EVs will be exempt from taxes on motor vehicles starting in 2025.
With little clear government support for EVs, lack of charging infrastructure, and the higher cost of EVs compared to fossil fuel cars, India struggles in its drive for EVs. However, the success of EVs in India might be achieved in a different way; the introduction of the two-wheel electric scooters throughout India to combat the dense population of the country, and pollution. Hopefully, soon electric scooters will be affordable enough for the masses in India, in the aim to cut down on the GHGs in the country.
The government of Canada is investing in green infrastructure and clean technologies including partnering with private and public bodies to attain the dream of a clean Canada. This drive toward sustainability has also pushed the need for zero-emission vehicles on Canadian roads, as well as the introduction of charging stations to accommodate the growing number. Although it has not attained the position of countries like Norway, China or even its neighbor the US, it is on the verge of being one of the countries with a higher renewable and sustainable energy in the future.
The earth is our home, using renewable and creating a more sustainable form of energy is all we need to change the problems that currently plague us. Countries setting policies that help people make the sustainable transit transition; and the global population taking the initiative to adopt hybrid vehicles, plug-in EVS, and 100% EVs, is a significant help to the cause. (Other countries not on this list are notable for their production and incentivizing of use of EVs, most notably South Korea).
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About the author - Eseandre is a passionate freelance writer, with over 2,000 positive reviews on Fiverr, who loves travelling and caring for the less privileged, and the earth. You can find her here- https://www.fiverr.com/eseandre