A new report has revealed the potential for huge savings and community benefits by taking polluting vehicles off the road and replacing them with electric vehicles.
The Australian Conservation Foundation engaged accounting firm Deloitte to research the economic opportunities that come hand in hand with clean transport.
Currently, the approach to road transport will cost Australia $865 billion between 2022 and 2050.
The report offers three alternative scenarios which each deliver big savings while also dramatically improving the world we live in.
Under the most ambitious plan, a staggering $492 billion can be saved if there’s a complete transition to electric vehicles and increased usage of public buses by 2035.
“If Australian leaders are looking for ways to cut emissions this decade and are serious about reaching net zero by 2050 then setting strong policy on electric vehicles is a vital and practical solution,” ACF Economy and Democracy Program Manager Matt Rose said.
“Australia is getting left behind when it comes to electric vehicles and it makes no sense when there are obvious savings to be made.
“Electric vehicles have proven technology to reduce emissions and makes the air we all breathe cleaner. They should be an integral part of every government and businesses plan to reduce emissions and also be made affordable to all Australians,” he said.
The Deloitte Access Economics modelling has been based off the cost to the Australian community from air pollution, noise pollution, water pollution and greenhouse gas emissions.
“Transport is a significant contributor to Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions, and we’re now at a real inflection point where we can realistically look at the benefits from a fast and complete transition to EVs in this country,” said Dr Eamon McGinn, Partner at Deloitte Access Economics, and principal author of the report.
“The potential benefits for our economy of the market-led EV solution, in terms of less greenhouse gas emissions, less air and water pollution, and less vehicle noise are truly staggering – almost $500 billion over the next 30 years.”
The report also looks at the way other cities, like San Francisco, have implemented strong policies including sufficient charging points as they work towards a goal of 100% electric vehicles by 2030.
Key policy options
- Electric vehicle mandates: require vehicle manufacturers to sell a minimum number of electric vehicles as a proportion of their overall sales in the country.
- Public transport: complete upgrade of buses from polluting to electric vehicles.
- Funding reform: the Federal Government directs its fuel tax revenues back into the economy by providing incentives for electric vehicles and accompanying infrastructure.