UK and China: Will electric vehicle integration meet Paris agreement targets?
Transportation Research Interdisciplinary Perspectives
It is widely accepted that the true environmental benefit of electric vehicles (EVs) is dependent upon non-tailpipe emissions from fuel/energy production. Through a comparison of EV and conventionally fuelled vehicle (CFVs) tailpipe emissions in China and the UK, considering their different EV integration plans, were projected between 2017 and 2050. For this analysis, three scenarios were modelled for private vehicles using 'two degree' scenario data for electricity generation: (1) 100% CFVs;
... n: (1) 100% CFVs; (2) 100% EVs; and (3A) 50:50 mix of CFVs and EVs integrated in 2030; and (3B) 50:50 mix integrated in 2040. Results indicated that between 2017 and 2050 for (1) emissions decreased by 56% in China and 91% in the UK, accounting for technological improvements, with emissions per vehicle decreasing by 89% and 24% respectively. Under (2) emissions decreased by 55% in China and by 92% in the UK and decreased by 88% in China and 88% in the UK per vehicle. Under (3) emissions increased by 10% in China and decreased by 43% in the UK, with emissions per vehicle decreasing by 70% and 95% respectively. Results demonstrate EV deployment is related to economic status of the country, so decarbonisation of the energy sector should be targeted. By transitioning towards EVs in 2030 or 2040 as opposed to 2050, both countries are more likely to meet emission goals. Therefore, policymakers should focus on introducing policy which combines carbon taxes, non-fossil fuels and energy efficiency with any financial profits reinvested to subsidise construction of renewable energy infrastructure. ⁎ Corresponding author at: Room G35, 23 St Machar Drive,