Is Electric Vehicle Adoption Turning a Corner?

 

The transportation sector is under intense pressure to decarbonize, and EVs could be the key

 

By Daniel Ciarcia, EcoEngineers

 

Emitting more than a quarter of all U.S. greenhouse gas emissions[1], the transportation sector is under intense pressure to decarbonize. EcoEngineers is committed to addressing this problem by supporting the transition to low- or no-carbon fuels (including liquid biofuels, renewable natural gas, electricity and hydrogen).

Of all the low-carbon alternatives to petroleum, electricity is simultaneously one of the most-promising and most-debated clean fuel technologies. Electric vehicles (EVs) range from e-bikes and scooters to light-duty passenger cars and medium- and heavy-duty vehicles such as buses, tractor trailers and refuse trucks.

What is the reality of the EV market?  Is the world on the verge of a real transformation, or is it merely hype? We recently provided some insights to these questions in our EV webinar in March.

 

 

The technological advantages of electrification are clear. EVs have simpler and more efficient designs, zero-tailpipe emissions, and an overall carbon footprint that is better for the planet than petroleum-based fuels. Some studies have determined that an electric vehicle generates less than half of the harmful environmental emissions over the life of the vehicle compared to gasoline or diesel.

The most cited concerns with electrification pertain to limited mileage range and slow charging times, but these are rapidly being addressed through innovation and design advancements. In the past, electric vehicles were limited to short, around-town trips, but today’s EVs can now meet the most common mobility needs.

The trends are clear. Nearly all the major influencers are advocating for transportation electrification, including private industry, government policy makers, and environmentalists. The challenge of transforming this industry is being met by large-scale investment and ambitious public policy initiatives.

EV charging station

Shutterstock

Currently, EVs represent just over 2% of the U.S. market for new light-duty vehicle sales. This market share is expected to double by the end of the year and reach 10% by 2025.[2]  Worldwide, electric vehicle market penetration is outpacing the U.S., with EVs consisting of over 4% of the global market and a year-over-year growth rate of 43%.  China sold 1.3M EVs in 2020, representing about a third of the 2020 global EVs sales.[3]

By 2025, most major automobile manufacturers will be producing a wide range of EV models, and by the end of this decade, automakers anticipate about half their sales will be from electric vehicles.  By 2035, or sooner, manufacturers and many policy makers are planning to fully phase out internal combustion engine vehicles (gasoline, diesel, etc.).  Given the current trends, these projections enable us to set our expectations and plan for the rapid growth ahead.

Government policy makers are setting ambitious goals. The U.S. government, and all but six U.S. states have enacted various forms of EV and infrastructure incentives. California and Massachusetts have gone further by requiring all vehicles to be zero-emission (at the tailpipe) within the next fifteen years.

California’s Low-Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) enables EV charging operators to earn revenue as well, through a program that incentivizes EVs and low-carbon electrical generation. The U.S. federal government is working to convert the entire federal fleet of 645,000 vehicles to electric, install a half million charging stations across the country, and establish EV initiatives for light-duty vehicles and busses.

Calls for electrification are rising, and EV adoption is visibly accelerating across the globe.  The world is entering an inflection point and all indications point to an EV market that will continue its industry-transforming trajectory.

EcoEngineers is a consulting and auditing firm that specializes in low-carbon fuels and decarbonization strategies. EcoEngineers offers a unique, comprehensive approach designed for the emerging low-carbon marketplace. In our experience, all successful clean energy projects and sustainability programs invest in the following six areas: 1) Knowledge of regulations and carbon markets, 2) Regulatory engagement, 3) 탄소 수명주기 분석, 4) 자산 개발 컨설팅, 5) 규정 준수 관리및 6) 및감사.

Daniel Ciarcia headshot

Daniel Ciarcia

Daniel Ciarcia is a Senior Regulatory Consultant at EcoEngineers and has more than 20 years of experience in clean-technology product management, strategic planning, and business development. He is EcoEngineers’ expert on electrification and electric vehicle (EV) implementation. He brings a winning track record in product and service development of a wide variety of energy and environmental sectors. For more information about the EV market and electrification, contact Dan at dciarcia@ecoengineers.us.

 

 


 

[1] USEPA (https://www.epa.gov/greenvehicles/fast-facts-transportation-greenhouse-gas-emissions)

[2] HIS Market Forecast

[3] EV Volumes (ev-volumes.com)