Roll forward 122 years and there’s now a registered motor vehicle for every one of the 20 million people of driving age in Australia.
- Roll forward 122 years and there’s now a registered motor vehicle for every one of the 20 million people of driving age in Australia.
- The slow pace at which Australia has adopted electric vehicles is maddening to many.
- But the transition to electric vehicles is changing gear in Australia, driven by both consumers and government.
- All the states and territories and many local governments had for some time taken steps to boost the uptake of electric vehicles.
A country wedded to the car
- You can see why cars are so popular in a country like Australia.
- We’re the sixth-largest country in the world, but the 55th-most-populous.
- With only around three people per square kilometre, we regularly travel large distances through sparsely populated areas.
- Australia also had a burgeoning automotive industry, which spawned fierce loyalties among fans of domestic brands.
We have the resources to go electric
- Adding to the frustration of EV advocates is Australia’s wealth of resources that can enhance the benefits electric vehicles offer.
- Australia has some of the best wind energy resources in the world with an estimated 5 terawatts of potential.
And there’s expertise to accelerate the transition
- Australia’s world-class energy researchers have been exploring issues relating to a mostly renewables-powered electricity grid for decades.
- In recent years, they have been investigating how electric vehicles could become an important asset for the electricity grid as “batteries on wheels”.
- The renewable energy agency, ARENA, has spent over $2 billion to increase the renewable energy supply in Australia.
- It has received $69 million in government funding and $280 million in cash and in-kind support from partners to accelerate the transition to reliable, affordable, clean energy.
While the new national strategy makes all the right noises, the main critique emerging is that it lacks real teeth. In particular, the specifics of a badly needed fuel-efficiency standard are still being developed. However, there is still plenty in the strategy to offer promise. It identifies the need for: