Broadening popularity of EV: An address to climate change

As a member of the Paris Agreement, Nepal has a Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC), which is a specific plan that each country develops as part of global action to address climate change. Nepal, during Paris Agreement, signed up for the global fight against climate change and to mitigate the impacts of climate change.

By 2020, Nepal aimed to increase the share of electric vehicles up to 20% from the 2010 level. By 2050, Nepal will decrease its dependency on fossils in the transport sector by 50% through effective mass public transport means while promoting energy efficiency and electrical vehicles. By 2025, Nepal will strive to decrease the rate of air pollution through proper monitoring of sources of air pollutants like wastes, old and unmaintained vehicles, and industries.

Nepal’s NDC commitments are to encourage the use of renewable sources of energy and to contribute to the battle of climate change. These commitments were to promote the usages of Electric Vehicles as major causes of air pollution are due to the use of fossil fuels used by Internal Combustion Engine (ICE). In the contemporary global context, Climate Change has become one of the concerning issues of every mankind. The use and promotion of EVs, thus, has also been considered as the need of the hour in a bid to meet the provisions introduced by the government for minimizing air pollution. However, the issues of climate change couldn’t enter at the political level. The implementation of increasing the share of EVs up to 20% wasn’t fulfilled. The government’s aim to reduce air pollution by 2025 is skeptical as pollution in the major city Kathmandu hasn’t been controlled.

On March 26, 27, and 28 the AQI was seen as very hazardous so the air quality of the capital city Kathmandu was very unhealthy to breathe which made the emergence of EVs more imperative, and tax provision is revisited to tackle increasing air pollution. In last year’s budget of 2020/2021 lot of criticism was drawn on the hefty taxation on battery-powered vehicles. But in the annual budget for 2021/2022, the government revised the taxation has to promote EVs in the Nepali market.

This has once again broadened the popularity of EVs in Nepal with an expected rise in demand for electric vehicles. New taxation has once again regained affordability and with rising the progress of Electric Vehicles over the years had made them more desirable. Already existing brands in Nepal with their e-cars are Hyundai, Kia, MG, and Mahindra. Soon, Tata Motors will be launching its electric Nexon model in Nepali Market.

EVs create less air and noise pollution and electricity is renewable, which is a motivating factor to switch from traditional ICE engine vehicles. In Nepal filling up tanks for ICE-run vehicles are more convenient than charging EVs. The infrastructure needed for smooth operations for EVs is limited in Nepal even though they require less expensive and less maintenance than other cars. While EVs are great for the environment there aren’t many options for EVs as there are in normal cars.

By- Sandesh Neupane

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