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      Vehicle Electrification Offers one of the Most Viable Solutions to country’s Air Pollution Crisis | Details Inside

      Every year, the festive season is welcome by worsening air quality in many regions of North India – particularly in Delhi and its adjoining areas. On Wednesday morning, air quality in the national capital reached the ‘hazardous’ level at 317.

      According to source apportionment study by The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), the transport sector accounted for 23% of the total air pollution of Delhi in 2019. In such a scenario, vehicle electrification offers a viable solution to the country’s air pollution crisis, believe experts from TERI, The International Council for Clean Transportation (ICCT) and Urban Works Institute.

      Mr Amit Bhatt, India Managing Director, ICCT Said :

      “This year, the rains and favourable climatic conditions did improve the air quality in September and October, but now it is moving towards the red zone again. The episodic events like stubble burning and pollution from crackers aggravate the air quality in the northern part of India, especially in winter. But a quick look at Delhi’s air quality reveals that air pollution is a persistent problem. A study by the ARAI and TERI in 2018 estimated that motor vehicles are the primary source of pollutants within Delhi and contribute to about 40 percent of PM 2.5 emissions. Therefore, it is vital to clean the transport system to clean Delhi’s air.”

      According to Mr IV Rao, Senior Visiting Fellow, TERI, worsening air quality and the increase in noise pollution around Diwali reaffirm the urgent need for transitioning to Electric Mobility.

      “Air quality is abnormally poor in Delhi and adjoining areas, particularly during the winter season. PM2.5 concentrations in Delhi violate the annual average standards by about 3-4 times. Fireworks during Diwali celebrations add to the pollution, further deteriorating the air quality. EVs do not have emit tail pipe emissions, and this is something extremely crucial for cities like Delhi.”

      According to a recent study, 30% of two-wheelers are expected to be electric by 2030.

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      Ms Shikha Rokadiya, Researcher (Consultant), ICCT said :

      “Considering that India is known to be one of the world’s largest two-wheeler markets, large-scale electrification of two wheelers is the most cost- effective pathway for bringing exhaust emissions to near-zero.”

      Talking about penetration of electric two-wheeler market in India, Mr Rao from TERI added :

      “The two-wheeler segment contributes to 70% of the auto sales in India. Cost and financial incentives offered by the government under the Faster Adoption of Manufacturing of Electric and Hybrid Vehicles (FAME) scheme make electric two-wheelers an attractive proposition for consumers. Going forward, the sale of electric-two-wheelers sales are bound to grow, maybe more than 30% by the year 2030. Higher adoption of public transport and its electrification, especially through electric buses, is a time-tested and effective way of curbing air pollution. Ms Shreya Gadepalli, Founder and Managing Trustee, Urban Works, said, “This year, Delhi has given a strong commitment to increasing its bus fleet by over 10,000. Out of this, more than 8000 buses will be electric by 2025. That’s a significant step in the right direction. However, getting more buses is just one part of the solution. There is also a need to increase their ridership. For that to happen, people need to see buses as a reliable, accessible, and attractive choice. Roadblocks such as the first mile and last-mile connectivity issues will have to be solved. Buses will need to go where people want to go, on time, and in comfort.”

      Collective efforts aim at transport decarbonisation have so far been instrumental in reducing the damage cause by the ill-effects of air pollution.

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      Phasing out internal combustion vehicles, including the ones use for freight is going to be a crucial imperative for securing a sustainable and ecologically viable future for the country.

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