Electric cars pollute more than petrol, diesel and hybrid cars

Electric cars pollute more than petrol, diesel and hybrid cars

News: World leaders have propagated that electric vehicles (EVs) are the cleanest and the future. However, a recent study conducted by the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kanpur has revealed that this may not be entirely true.

Key Findings:
 The study reports that electric cars are not the most eco-friendly option when compared to hybrid electric vehicles and internal combustion vehicles.
 According to the study, it has been discovered that electric cars produce 15-50 percent more Greenhouse Gases (GHGs) throughout their lifecycle, including manufacturing, usage, and scrappage, when compared to hybrid and internal combustion vehicles.
 Furthermore, the study also reported that the cost of purchasing, insuring, and maintaining EVs is 15-60% higher when calculated per kilometer.
 The study concludes that hybrid electric vehicles are the most environmentally beneficial option.
 The study identifies one of the main reasons behind electric cars producing more GHGs as the current scenario in India, where 75 percent of electricity is generated from coal sources, a major GHG producer. Electric cars rely on this source of energy for charging their batteries.

What does the study suggest?
 It suggests to reduce taxes on hybrid vehicles and put them on par with electric vehicles.

Why EV’s are still important for India?
 EVs contribute to energy diversity by reducing dependence on oil imports.
 As the electricity grid can be powered by a mix of energy sources, including renewables like solar and wind, EVs offer the opportunity to shift transportation towards cleaner and more sustainable energy options.
 Electric vehicles have lower operating costs, as electricity is generally cheaper than gasoline or diesel. Moreover, EVs have fewer moving parts and require less maintenance, resulting in reduced servicing and repair expenses over time.
 Unlike fossil fuel engine vehicles, EVs produce zero tailpipe emissions. EVs help reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) and other pollutants that contribute to air pollution, smog, and global warming.
 Electric vehicles can help decongesting cities by promoting shared mobility and compact design.
 Shared mobility refers to the use of vehicles as a service rather than as a personal asset. This can reduce the number of vehicles on the road and the need for parking space.
 Compact design refers to the use of smaller and lighter vehicles that can fit more easily in urban spaces. This can also reduce congestion and emissions.
 Innovative and futuristic smart EVs for shorter intra-city distances, day- trips, and the like would not need a bigger battery. That means less time to recharge and lower cost.

 The upfront cost of purchasing an electric vehicle is relatively higher compared to conventional vehicles.
 In India, the charging infrastructure is still in the early stages of development and is concentrated in major cities.
 Although EV ranges have been improving, there is still a perception that EVs may not offer sufficient range for long-distance travel.
 The production of lithium-ion batteries, which are a key component of EVs, requires specific minerals and rare earth elements. India currently relies heavily on imports for battery manufacturing, leading to supply chain challenges.
 Fewer options available in EV segment as compared to conventional ones.
 Recharging batteries takes longer time compared to re-fueling petrol/diesel in vehicles.
 Question marks over the efficacy of battery life.

What are government initiatives for EV in India?
 The Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Electric Vehicles (FAME)scheme II, which provides incentives for EV manufacturers and buyers.
 Battery Swapping Policy – This initiative for electric vehicles would unify the battery specifications used in EVs across India. The law will aid in the promotion of EVs in time-sensitive service sectors such as delivery and intercity transportation because exchanging a depleted battery for a fully charged one is a more feasible choice than on-the-spot recharging, which may take hours.
 Reduction in custom duties on Electric vehicles. For example, Nickel ores and cobalt form important alloys in battery manufacturing which are largely imported. The reduction in customs duties will assist local EV battery manufacturers in lowering production costs.
 Special E-Mobility Zone - The government intends to create electric car mobility zones. Only electric cars or equivalent vehicles will be authorised to operate in the administration-designated zones. Similar policies are standard in several European nations as well as China.
 The Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme, which provides incentives for the manufacturing of electric vehicles and components.
 National Mission on Transformative Mobility and Storage - The aim of the mission is to drive strategies for transformative mobility and Phased Manufacturing Programmes for electric vehicles, electric vehicle Components and Batteries.
 Vehicle Scrappage Policy
 India is among a handful of countries that support the global EV30@30 campaign, which aims for at least 30% new vehicle sales to be electric by 2030.
 The Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs has also amended the Model Building Bye-laws, 2016 (MBBL) to mandate setting aside 20% of the parking space for EV charging facilities in residential and commercial buildings.
 E-Amrit Portal - e-AMRIT (Accelerated e-Mobility Revolution for India's Transportation) portal for creating awareness about electric mobility in India. The portal aims to serve as a ‘one-stop site’ to provide all the information related to the adoption of electric vehicles in India. e-AMRIT is the result of a joint initiative between NITI Aayog and the UK Government.

 The Indian government has paved the way for initiatives for Electric Vehicles to promote sustainable transportation system through several measures. By 2030, all government cars must be electric. It also intends to phase out all commercial fleets and provide automobiles powered by fossil fuels in every city by 2030.
Source – Indian Express, PIB, Government ministry websites

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