What Is the Biggest Obstacle to EV Adoption?
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There’s been a lot of news about automakers coming out with new electric vehicles (EVs). But it’s hard to tell how many consumers are buying them. More states are committing to a zero-emission future by phasing out gas cars in the upcoming years.
In order for countries to achieve widespread EV adoption, they’ll have to overcome several obstacles. This includes improving the battery production process, building charging infrastructure, and increasing consumer demand.
What will make electric vehicles catch on quicker?
The impact of government regulations on electric vehicle adoption
According to Politico, the number one factor to accelerating the adoption of EVs is government regulations. Canada aims to ban gas-powered cars by 2035. Our neighbor is mirroring the strategy of the European Union that’s imposing tough emissions reduction standards on cars made or sold in Europe.
California and Massachusetts have similar plans to ban new cars with internal combustion engines by 2035. Around the globe, governments are providing tax incentives and subsidies to encourage consumers to buy EVs.
In Shanghai, China, drivers are offered a free license plate if they drive a “new energy vehicle.” For a car with a traditional engine, you have to go through an auction to get a license plate.
It’ll take an average of 12 years in the U.S. for EV adoption to have an impact on emissions, as reported by Politico. That’s why it’s important for policymakers to tighten emissions standards and continue pushing for a shift to EVs as soon as possible.
Battery production is one of the biggest challenges
One of the biggest challenges to EV adoption is the battery production process and supply chain. New mining and supply chains are needed to support EVs.
There are a lot of minerals required to produce batteries for EVs, as a result, there’s a lot of mining and transportation of materials involved. According to Mark Mills, a mining and energy specialist, 500,000 pounds of earth needs to be moved in the course of mining for a thousand-pound electric car battery.
The battery is one of the most expensive components in an electric car. Automakers are working to improve the performance of batteries and streamlining the manufacturing process to reduce costs.
Most EVs use lithium-ion batteries, and currently, China controls 80% of the lithium battery supply chains, according to Politico. U.S. automakers have started to build battery factories domestically so they are less dependent on China.
More charging infrastructure needs to be built
Range anxiety makes many consumers hesitate to switch to EVs. The electric grid needs to be modernized and expanded to support EV charging. Drivers in remote areas also need better access to charging stations.
The Biden administration has committed $73 billion into clean energy and improving the nation’s electric grid. In the long term, the government will need a sustainable business model to fund EV charging infrastructure.
How eager are people to buy electric cars?
Most consumers buying electric cars right now are mostly early adopters. California has the highest rates of EV adoption, but many other states are lagging behind.
For example, North Dakota only had 220 EVs registered as of June. Reliable transportation is important for consumers who need to commute frequently. Consumers are familiar with gas-powered vehicles and they know that it’ll be easy to find gas stations.
If charging infrastructure and range is improved, this will help consumers have more confidence in shifting to electric vehicles.
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