The Australian: Electric cars emit ‘more carbon’

Written by Geoff Chambers

Electric vehicles in Australia’s eastern states are responsible for more carbon dioxide emissions than regular petrol vehicles, according to an expert report that warns Labor’s green cars policy would require up to $7 billion in upgrades and installation of recharging infrastructure across the nation.

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A pre-election briefing obtained by The Australian, which was prepared by engineering firm ABMARC, concedes the immediate benefit of electric vehicles in Australia “is not guaranteed”. It also states Bill Shorten’s electric vehicle target of 50 per cent of new car sales by 2030 would need between $5bn and $7bn in recharging infrastructure and additional investment in “switchboards, transformers and poles and wires”.

“Installing this level of charging infrastructure would require a significant increase in the rate of investment in recharging infrastructure,” the report says.

Bill Shorten’s pre-election green cars pledge would have required up to $7 billion in upgrades and installation of recharging infrastructure. Picture: Kym Smith

The report, released to stakeholders in May, also provides a breakdown comparing average CO2 emissions of hybrid, petrol, diesel and electric vehicles in Australia.

ABMARC, which is used by government departments, motoring firms and major energy companies, reveals “CO2 emissions from electric vehicles in Victoria are particularly high, similar to the average diesel CO2 emissions”.

On average, in NSW, Victoria, ACT and Queensland, petrol vehicles “provide less CO2 than electric vehicles”, with ABMARC linking the emissions disparity with “Australia’s continued reliance on coal-fired power stations”. The consultancy firm also notes that the Australian Average Diesel emissions data was “heavily skewed by light commercial vehicles (utes) and larger SUVs”.

The report says hybrid vehicles “provide greater environmental benefits in nearly all states and territories” than electric vehicles with the exception of Tasmania, which primarily uses hydro-electricity.

The ABMARC analysis also unravels the argument for Australia to replicate Norway’s electric car market, which imposes heavy taxes on passenger vehicles and provides generous incentives for EVs.

Full article here

Comments (3)

  • Avatar

    Judy Ryan


    Actually, it is not carbon and they are measuring, it is carbon dioxide, which is the life essential trace gas in the atmosphere. Therefore, electric cars are a good thing, especially when you consider they are replacing smelly, petroleum that juvenile delinquents get high on.

    • Avatar

      Tom O


      Ah. So now I understand. Having something heavily subsidized and requires significant single purpose infrastructure is “a good thing” because it isn’t “smelly.” Have you ever considered the amount of ozone that can also be generated by electrical devices? You might not get “high” off it, but then if it was possible, “juveniles” would, along with anything else they are told will work for them. Pretty shaky reasons to destroy freedom of movement, and civilization as we know it.

      • Avatar

        Judy Ryan


        Dear Tom O,
        Why do you think plug in electric vehicles are subsidised. THEY ARE NOT. Further, at night you can plug them in and the battery is recharged by good old reliable, affordable, non-subsidised coal.

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