The Government has a central role to play in the uptake of electric and zero emissions vehicles. It controls multiple levers, including potential regulatory tools, design rules, and taxes and incentives that could be used to drive uptake. It also has the spending power in terms of infrastructure and fleet to assist in moving these technologies from those restricted to early adopters, to a broader mainstream.
In October 2021 the Business Council of Australia released “Achieving a Net Zero Economy”, which set out a transition pathway to reaching net zero by 2050. We support the Government’s now legislated objective of achieving net zero emissions by 2050, and the interim target of a 43 per cent reduction in emissions by 2030. After electricity generation and stationary energy use, emissions from the transport sector make up the third largest source of greenhouse gases in Australia. The transport sector makes up 17.6 per cent of the nation’s emissions, more than agriculture, industrial processes, or emissions from waste. This means targeting greenhouse gas emissions from this sector is a critical component in achieving the nation’s emissions reduction targets.
Electric vehicles are generally more energy efficient than their internal combustion powered counterparts, and they can be powered by renewable energy.
In this context, the Business Council welcomes the Government’s commitment to develop a National Electric Vehicle Strategy. The Strategy must be ambitious and be willing to pull on multiple levers if Australia is to achieve the transition necessary in the transport space to meet our emissions reduction goals. This submission puts forward a number of recommendations for the Government’s consideration in this Strategy.