• Image Credit: Mahindra
  • Image Credit: Mahindra
  • Image Credit: Mahindra
  • Image Credit: Mahindra
  • Image Credit: Mahindra
  • Image Credit: Mahindra
  • Image Credit: Mahindra
India wants to be a world leader when it comes to electric vehicles. In 2013, the country launched its National Electric Mobility Mission Plan, and later its FAME plan, to encourage vehicle electrification and achieve fuel security. India has been subsidizing new EVs as well as conversions to electrify existing vehicles that are powered by fossil fuels. The government has been offering up cash to automakers to encourage EV production, and has been supporting the deployment of charging infrastructure to support an electrified fleet. This was all laid out as part of India's goal to put 6 to 7 million hybrid and electric vehicles on its roads by 2020. Now, India is putting its electrification efforts into top gear, setting its sights on a goal of having 100 percent of the vehicles on its roads powered completely by electricity by the year 2030.

India's Minister of State with Independent Charge for Power, Coal, New and Renewable Energy (Power Minister, for short), Piyush Goyal, told a youth conference that he is working with Nitin Gadkari, India's Minister of Road Transport and Highways, on a scheme to position the country as the leader in EVs.

Goyal says the plan will not use government funds, though the government could continue to pursue incentives. Instead, drivers would be able to buy an electric car with no down payment, and pay the car off using fuel savings. Goyal proposes that electricity tariffs need not increase, but that a more efficient electricity strategy would be necessary for the program to work. "Innovation is possible," says Goyal, "it just needs an open mind. You need to think of scale and be honest."

Goyal, Nitin and other ministers are looking into the feasibility of such a plan, and have arranged to meet to discuss the scheme in more detail in early April.

Considering India's population of over 1.2 billion people, completely eliminating tailpipe emissions would have an impact on air quality, particularly in more densely populates cities. If India can make a shift toward using more renewable energy in its electric grid, the benefits would be massive. That said, putting more pressure on a coal-heavy grid could make more problems for India and the rest of the world.

Related Video:
India's Role In The Paris Climate Talks


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