Transport is one of the few sectors in the EU where emissions are actually growing. Brussels believes that electric vehicle uptake is one of the main solutions to halt this trend, but what steps are actually being taken to decarbonise our roads?
The Paris Agreement and air quality rules mean that Europe has to get serious about reducing the transport sector’s impact on the environment, if total cuts of 40% by 2030 are to remain feasible.
Global sales of new electric vehicles topped a million units for the first time in 2017 but that milestone was largely driven by mass expansion in China, whose market is now larger than Europe and the United States combined.
But Europe wants to keep up with the Middle Kingdom by making sure that there is enough charging infrastructure in place, consumers have access to a wide range of vehicle choices and the power behind the plug is as environmentally friendly as possible.
The benefits of electrifying the sector are becoming clearer and recent figures compiled by Bloomberg show that EVs could reduce global oil consumption by 279,000 barrels a day, roughly equivalent to Greece’s daily oil needs. Electric buses account for 233,000 of those barrels.