With the European Union (EU) set to ban the sale of all new cars and vans powered by fossil fuels by 2035 could ratchet up pressure on Australia to raise its lagging fuel efficiency standards.
The EU is a significant manufacturer of cars sold in Australia. It is also a large market for non-European car manufacturers, such as Japanese, Korean and US brands, which are now expected to accelerate their shift to producing zero emissions vehicles.
Without national emissions targets, Australia risks becoming a laggard. To avoid being left behind by the rest of the world, Australia must set some mandating national emissions targets for auto importers to prioritise sending low and zero emissions vehicles to the Australian market.
The main barriers to transport electrification in Australia are the low supply of electric vehicles. The Electric Vehicle Council blames Australia’s lack of fuel efficiency standards and other policies to boost supply, such as sales mandates.
The new federal government have said they will consider all viable options to build on the EV policy announcements they have already made. Reducing emissions in the transport sector is viewed as a critical step if the government wants to achieve its new emission reduction target of 43 per cent by 2030.