Zapping Behind

Source: BY MATTHEW CHOI, Politico • Posted: Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Biden’s infrastructure investments could help the U.S. close the gap with Europe and China in the global EV race. The U.S. is the third largest producer for light duty EVs, but the gap is widening due to exponential growth in Europe and China, according to a new report by the International Council on Clean Transportation — the same group that conducted the report at the heart of the Volkswagen emissions scandal.

The U.S.’ share of all EVs produced since 2010 has decreased in the past few years, going from 20 percent in 2017 to 18 percent in 2020. Meanwhile, China’s grew to 44 percent from 36 percent, and Europe’s grew to 25 percent from 23 percent in that same time period. The ICCT ties EV growth with policies that support their expansion in the market, including Europe’s more stringent CO2 emissions standards, and China’s host of programs to encourage EV production and sales. And with 80 percent of vehicles being sold in the same areas they were produced, a boost in demand would also encourage a boost in manufacturing in the U.S., the report suggests.

The latest bipartisan infrastructure agreement would allocate $7.5 billion for electric vehicle infrastructure, including the construction of 500,000 charging stations. But that investment would still have to rely heavily on private cooperation, considering the current costs of fast-charging stations.

The ICCT report comes a day after Wood Mackenzie released its own analysis showing huge growth forecasts for EVs, with battery electric cars representing 56 percent of global vehicle sales in 2050, relative to internal combustion engines at 18 percent. That report also predicts 550 million charging outlets globally by the middle of the decade, with “policy support including subsidies and regulations” ensuring “that the electric vehicle charging market grows in line with vehicles themselves”.