The preliminary findings of a University of Queensland study into the effect of taxing electric vehicles (EVs), without introducing incentives to buy them, finds that EV sales will be hit hard, resulting in a 25 per cent fall in new EVs and much higher emissions.
The UQ study says that sales of EVs out to 2050 could be 25 per cent below the federal government’s “business as usual” scenarios, resulting in up to 10 million fewer EVs on the road.
The news that three Australian states – Victoria, South Australia and New South Wales – would consider an “EV tax” has stirred up huge controversy across relevant sectors, and it has been slammed variously as “backwards“, a “culture war” and “shameful“.
The EV tax in Victoria would mean electric vehicles drivers pay 2.5 cents for every kilometre driven, while plug-in hybrids would pay 2 cents per kilometre, regardless of how many kilometres were driven on electric only power.
“Unfortunately, neither of these State Governments seem to have recognised that higher taxes will lead to lower EV sales,” writes Jake Whitehead, an electric vehicle research at the University of Queensland who also works on the global stage with the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and the International Electric Vehicle Policy Council.
“The reality is that the introduction of these EV taxes risks pushing Australia even further into the wilderness in terms of EV uptake, and is completely incongruent with mid-century Net Zero Emission targets, which appear to easily roll off the tongues of politicians, but are not backed up by concrete actions to bring them to fruition.”
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