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  • Writer's picture2022 Global Voices Fellow

Curbing transport emissions in Victoria by incentivising electric vehicle adoption

By Konnor Terzakis, RMIT University, OECD, 2021

Konnor Terzakis is studying an Honours Degree and Bachelor of Arts (International Studies) at RMIT University. His policy is about curbing transport emissions in Victoria by incentivising electric vehicle adoption.

Executive Summary

Transport emissions, particularly vehicle emissions, are not only contributing to Victoria’s CO2 emissions, but their constant growth is offsetting any gains made by emission reductions in other industries. To curb vehicle emissions, environmentally friendly Electric Vehicles (EVs), which offer a clean fuel alternative, need to be adopted. However, Victoria’s EV policies promoting EV adoption lag behind the rest of the country. Accompanied by the recently introduced EV usage tax, the Victorian approach disincentivises adoption. Thus, endangering Victoria’s and subsequently Australia’s ability to meet their climate emission reduction targets. To reverse this and ensure Victorian EV policy incentivises the use and adoption of EVs, this paper presents three policy recommendations.

The first is to repeal the Electric Vehicle Road Usage tax, removing this disincentivising tax on EVs, which has been publicly labelled as the “Worst EV Policy in the World” (The Australia Institute, 2021b). The second is to learn from Norway’s success in promoting EV adoption and offering EV users benefits not available to petrol/gas and diesel vehicles. Specifically recommendation two advocates for the Victorian Government to permit EVs to use bus lanes. Lastly, this paper suggests the Victorian Government commission a feasibility report into offsetting import tariffs and GST on EVs. These recommendations would set Victoria apart and make the state the most cost-effective place in Australia to purchase EVs. Thus, increasing the amount of people who can afford to buy EVs, and aiding an increase in adoption.

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