Australia has an opportunity to stimulate the widespread uptake of electric vehicles (EVs) for the benefit of consumers and the environment. From a consumer perspective, barriers to EVs have centred around choice, affordability and charging network limitations. The good news is that we’re starting to see technology and policy-led solutions emerge, helping to deliver the benefits of cheaper, low emissions transport.
EVs are the key technology to decarbonise road transport, a sector that accounts for 84% of Australia’s transport emissions.1 Passenger electric cars are surging in popularity, with demand for EVs in Australia having grown there is a significant opportunity to continue to build on this growth of our local market. We saw new EV purchases almost double in 2022, compared to 2021. There are now approximately 83,000 EVs on our roads, with 79% of those being battery EVs. The ACT leads the nation on sales, with 9.5% of all new vehicles sales being EVs, followed by New South Wales (3.7%), Victoria (3.4%), Queensland (3.3%), Tasmania (3.3%), Western Australia (2.8%), South Australia (2.3%), and the Northern Territory (0.8%).2 If the growth experienced in the past few years is sustained, CO2 emissions from cars can be put on a path in line with Australia’s commitment to 43% emissions reduction target by 2030, and net zero emissions by 2050.3
Steering into the future
International experience in the EV market has shown that adoption of EVs has been strongest where leadership in national policy has provided direction to attract a wide supply of EV models, stimulate demand and ensure the associated infrastructure is being put in place. Recently, the Australian Government released a National EV Strategy as the government has continued to demonstrate a commitment to pursuing policies to encourage the further development of the sector. We support the objectives and outcomes set out in the strategy as a significant step toward supporting the development of a domestic EV market. The strategy is an opportunity to build on the actions that are well underway across Australia to align our goals nationally and consistently with Australia’s international commitments, while helping people and industry to transition.
AGL provided a submission to the previous consultation paper where we outlined our support in establishing a national framework and recognised that accelerating the uptake of EVs will be an integral technology pathway for decarbonising Australia’s economy. You can read our submission here.
AGL’s approach to EVs
Work carried out by industry in partnership with customers will aid in the development of innovative products and services that meet expectations on how customers want to utilise their EV. AGL continues to offer products and conduct trials to support customers in choosing how they move.
At AGL we offer an Electric Car Subscription where people can get behind the wheel of an EV for a flat monthly fee, including everything a customer may need to get on the road, with no lock in contract. The plans are offered on a 3, 6 or 12 month subscription, where customers are able to swap their EV every 6 months. You can watch our customer case study here.
A key project for AGL has been our AGL’s Electric Vehicle Orchestration Trial that commenced in November 2020 with funding from ARENA as part of ARENA’s Advancing Renewables Program. This trial is working to demonstrate how we create value using customers’ distributed energy assets like batteries and share the value with customers. We’re working with our customers during the trial to understand how they feel about smart charging so we can improve their experience and help shape future energy offers for EV owners. Some key lessons learnt from the smart charging component of this project are that charging controls works to reduce demand at peak times, opt-out rates are very low, and few drivers charge their car daily. More information about the trial and the lessons learnt can be found here.
AGL will continue to partner with our customers, industry, and governments to design products and services that decarbonise the way we move.
1DISER (2021) Australia’s Emissions Projections 2021.
2EV Council (2022) State of EVs Report