IASbhai Daily Editorial Hunt | 11th Jan 2021
“Everything has beauty, but not everyone can see.” – Confucius
EDITORIAL HUNT #309 :“Electric Vehicles (EVs) in 2021”
Electric Vehicles (EVs) in 2021
Central Vista, executive’s caprice, and rule of law
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 1 : 3 : Effects of globalisation on Indian society : Infrastructure
What are the challenges, advantages in adoption of Electric Vehicles (EVs) in 2021 . Comment -(GS 1/3)
- Electric Vehicles in India
- Way Forward
- ADVANTAGES : Reducing dependence on crude oil will save the states money, reduce carbon emissions, and build domestic energy independence.
- EASY TRANSITION : Transition to electric vehicles is economically and environmentally viable option.
- ENERGY SECURITY : This will also influence India’s foreign policy as our energy security dependence will shift from West Asia to Latin America.
BENEFITS OF ELECTRIC VEHICLES
- OIL DEPENDENCY : Shifting towards EVs will help India to reduce oil dependency while solving the challenge of energy scarcity and moving towards renewable and clean sources of energy.
- NATURE FIRST : Controlling Pollution, climate and resource and Mitigating Climate Change.
- RELIANCE ON FOSSIL FUELS : This makes it all the more reason for India to make electric cars and vehicles a priority in the fight against the reliance on fossil fuels.
- NEW CONCERN : India has had a growing appetite for lithium-ion batteries, and so, lithium imports have tripled from $384 mn to $1.2 bn.
- LACK OF BATTERY CELL MANUFACTURING : There is a complete absence of primary battery cell manufacturing in India which poses the risk of increasing trade deficit.
- LIMITED GRID CAPACITY : According to a NITI Aayog report, India’s EVs market needs a minimum of 10 GW of cells by 2022, which would need to be expanded to about 50 GW by 2025.
- LOCAL ISSUES : Bringing transportation congestion, affordability, infrastructure and transit systems availability are localized issues, impede the standardization of EVs.
- POLLUTION : Lithium ion and cobalt Industry still lack the range that would make them a viable alternative to internal combustion engines.
SCHEMES AND POLICIES
- PAN INDIA PROGRAM : The State aims to see 6 million electric and hybrid vehicles on the roads by 2020 under the National Electric Mobility Mission Plan 2020.
- TAX REBATE : The GST reduction for electric vehicles from 12% to 5%.
- CHARGING INFRASTRUCTURE : The Union power ministry categorized charging of batteries as a service, which will help charging stations operate without licences.
- PLANNED CITIES : Implementation of smart cities would also boost the growth of electric vehicles.
- SELF RELIANCE : This will be a long-term solution to clean our cities, build new markets, and skill people for new jobs towards an ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’.
WHAT MEASURES NEEDS TO BE TAKEN?
- STAKEHOLDERS : State and city-level players need to be involved so as to address several technical and infrastructural needs.
- RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT : Investment is required (PPP model) for research and development in battery-making and exploring alternative technologies.
- REDUCING INITIAL COST : Avoids multiplicity and reduces the cost of infrastructure, while making it convenient and safe for users.
- TIMELINE MEASURES : India needs a road map, with timelines, processes, well-researched impact studies, bold initiatives and robust investments.
MINING LITHIUM, COBALT OVERSEAS
- India in recent years started reaching out to the ‘Lithium Triangle’ in South America.
- In 2019, Khanij Bidesh India Ltd inked a pact with an Argentine firm to jointly prospect lithium in the South American country.
- The Consortium has been formed by the Ministry of Mines, Government of India, for identifying, exploring, acquiring, developing and processing strategic minerals overseas.
- Now, India is exploring options in Chile and Bolivia, two other top lithium-producing countries.
Global producers of lithium: In 2019, the world’s Top 5 lithium producers were:
- Australia – 52.9% of global production
- Chile – 21.5%
- China – 9.7%
- Argentina – 8.3%
- Zimbabwe – 2.1
- INCREASING NUMBERS : The number of privately-owned motorised vehicles rose from 29 million in 2002 to 160 million in 2013.
- EXPECTED JUMP : The above figure will almost certainly rise again, to over 500 million, by 2030.
- HYDROGEN FUEL ADVANTAGE : In comparison to CNG, H-CNG allows for a 70% reduction in carbon monoxide emissions and a 25% reduction in hydrocarbon emissions.
- DEMAND FOR HYDROGEN : As per a policy brief issued by TERI, demand for hydrogen in India is expected to increase 3-10 fold by 2050.
- POLICY INTERVENTION : With State’s support battery manufacturers by supplying lithium and cobalt, this industry is more likely to grow domestically to support India’s goal to switch to electric mobility.
The State is taking initiatives to take the front seat in electric mobility.