100% Electric Cars Affordable and Realistic for Australia

A recent report states that Australia could move to 100 percent electric cars over a 10 year period at a modest cost of $20 per capita, per week.

The study also predicts that electric vehicles could be completely powered by renewable energy, eliminating at least 6 percent of Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions.

A study by Beyond Zero Emissions “Zero Carbon Australia Electric Vehicles Report” states that such a shift is not only affordable but also realistic and quantifies the cost of replacing all existing cars in Australia with the electric cars within 10 years.

The report further notes that ordinary urban Australians drive about 35km a day, with nearly half of the trips less than 5km. Over 99 percent of all trips were less than 120km, which falls within the range of a standard electric vehicle.

While the study foresees scenarios of Australians powering their EVs at home, the modeling used in the analysis incorporates public charging infrastructure strategically located throughout Australia’s urban areas and with the capability of charging an EV battery by up to 80 percent in 30 minutes.

Employing conservative assumptions, the analysis indicates that it would cost around 25 percent more than a business-as-usual scenario to switch to 100 percent electric vehicles by 2025, an equivalent of $20 more per person, per week.

“The costs of shifting to 100 per cent electric vehicles would be even lower if complementary policies are adopted to allow more Australians to conveniently walk, cycle, and use public transport, with simultaneous support for car-share and ride-share programs that provide the convenience of access to a car, while avoiding the costs of individual car ownership,” the executive summary stated.

Renewables to Boost Electric Cars Even Further

The report goes on to explain that with the rapid decrease in costs related to solar power, there are more opportunities for powering electric cars directly from rooftop solar systems.

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“If managed carefully, co-locating solar generation (PV) with electric cars can limit negative cost impacts of either technology on the distribution grid,” the report stated.

Regarding 100 percent electric bus transport for urban areas, the analysis reveals this would only cost 10 percent more than that of business as usual – $0.72 per capita per week. However, given the most optimistic scenario, the report noted that a shift to 100 percent electric buses within ten years would cost about 12 percent less than that of business as usual.

“A shift to 100 percent electric buses for all urban public bus transport in Australia is found to cost only 10 percent more than business as usual. This amounts to an increase in cost of only $0.72 per capita per week”, reads the analysis.

“If bus and battery technology progresses at the more rapid end of projections, maintenance costs for electric buses are at the lower end of projections, and petrol prices are at the higher end of projections, then this analysis finds that a shift to 100 percent electric buses in ten years could cost almost 12 percent less than business as usual. This would mean that a transition to 100 percent electric buses would be economically attractive.”

UQ Leads Australian Development of Electric Cars Industry

The report was unveiled in Brisbane at the University of Queensland’s St. Lucia campus.

Early in the year, UQ began offering free electric vehicle recharging after setting up four Tritium solar-powered EV chargers at its campuses located at St. Lucia and Gatton.

Mr. Mark Bailey, Minister for Energy welcomed the report saying Palaszczuk Government is committed to ensuring EV’s become a common sight in Queensland in the near future. The government recently awarded $2.5 million to Brisbane’s Tritium to promote the development of their first charging technology.

“I am proud that Queensland is a world leader in residential solar. It’s now our second largest power generator with over 400,000 solar rooftops, and over 1,500 megawatts of installed capacity,” said Minister Bailey.

“EVs can provide an energy storage solution for these homes and help us turn the Sunshine State into the Solar State”.

The Author

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