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What public policy for the large-scale roll-out of electric vehicles?

January 2014

For the past year, IFP Energies nouvelles (IFPEN) has been leading the  SCelecTRA project , selected as part of the European ERA-NET Electromobility+ call for projects.

The objective of SCelecTRA is to identify the most effective public policies encouraging the roll-out of electric vehicles (hybrid and all-electric).

ERA-NET is a European initiative bringing together European research agencies, bodies and ministries around highly innovative projects focusing on technologies for the future. In particular, Electromobility+ aims to lay down  the foundations for the electromobility of tomorrow in Europe.

Launched in 2012 for a 3-year period and supported by a budget of 689,000 euros, SCelecTRA brings together 5 partners with complementary areas of expertise: IFPEN, IFSTTAR, Kanlo, EIFER (Germany) and PE International (Austria).

SCelecTRA focuses on three areas:

1- Analysis of the various European public policies implemented to encourage the introduction of new types of vehicles in the past 15 years (scrapping premium schemes, bonus malus systems, rebates for the purchase of clean vehicles, etc.) and their impact on electromobility.

Fiscal and environmental measures vary significantly from one European country to another, as does the composition of vehicle fleets. Against this background, it is useful to identify the variables with the greatest influence on the development of vehicle electrification (purchase price, fiscal measures, fuel price, etc.) and to measure the success of the various European policies.

2- Simulation of public policy scenarios up to 2030, and their impact on the development of a stable and significant market for electric vehicles (in each European country). To achieve this, the partners are using the European TIMES simulation model (PET36) implemented by Kanlo. This model enables a complete and integrated approach, taking into account:

• the impact of these scenarios on the energy sector as a whole, in terms of energy production, vehicle production, rebound effects (impact of growth in electricity consumption by the transport sector for the residential sector), etc.

• the cost dimension: purchase cost, cost of usage, maintenance cost, etc.

3- Performance of lifecycle analyses ( LCA). Nowadays, LCAs are an integral component in the assessment of new energy technologies, helping to guide decision-makers in their choices. These incorporate not only the technical performance, but also the environmental performance (energy consumption, greenhouse gas emissions, impacts on biodiversity, etc.) of the entire production process. The partners in SCelecTRA will therefore perform two types of LCA:

LCAs on the various existing vehicle technologies – IC vehicles and electric vehicles - in Europe

LCAs on the basis of the scenarios simulated in order to determine their environmental impact on the European energy sector as a whole and assess the external costs of such evolutions.

By adopting an approach simultaneously examining energy-related, technical, economic and environmental aspects,  SCelecTRA will provide the public authorities with access to a relevant tool for the analysis of the various electromobility incentive instruments.


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