Electric Vehicle Current Affairs - 2019

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World’s First Electronic Flight takes off from Canada

The first fully electronic flight in the world completed its test flight successfully on December 10, 2019. The flight is to operate from Vancouver, Canada to the near by islands.

Highlights

The zero emission completely electronic flight proved that all-electric commercial aviation is possible. The electrical aircraft designed was a 6-seater sea plane that was retrofitted with an electric motor. The first flight lasted for 15 minutes. The electrical flight was designed by the company Harbor Air.

India also promotes and incentivizes the use of electric vehicles.

Promotion of Electric Vehicles in India

The Department of Heavy Industry is implementing FAME-India scheme (Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Electric Vehicles in India) to increase the awareness and usage of electric vehicles. Till March 2019, GoI under the scheme supported 2.8 lakh hybrid vehicles by incentivizing around Rs 359 crores and saving 50 million litres of fuel and reducing 124 million kg of carbon dioxide.

The GST on Electric Vehicles were reduced to 5%. Also, Ministry of Power had recently allowed sale of electricity for charging electric vehicles. These moves have increased the investments in charging infrastructure.

Infrastructure for Electric Vehicles in India

Under Phase I of the FAME scheme around 500 charging stations have been sanctioned. Out of these 500, 230 charging stations were installed. The Department of Heavy Industry has expressed interest to get proposals for establishing 1000 charging stations.

5 lakh government vehicles to be converted into e-vehicles

The Minister of Environment and Climate Change Prakash Javadekar flagged off the electric vehicles procured by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting in New Delhi.

Highlights

  • The minister announced that all the 5 lakh government vehicles are to be converted into electric vehicles.
  • The process is to be carried out in phased manner
  • The purpose of the step is to reduce the dependence of the country on Petrol and Diesel
  • This will save 832 million litres of petrol and diesel and will reduce 2.23 million tons of carbon-dioxide being released.

Significance

  • This will aid in achieving India’s commitment towards reducing GHG (Green House Gas) emission by 33% to 35% by 2030 as compared to 2005
  • India is home to 14 out of 20 most polluted cities in the world. Electric Vehicles help improve the scenario by reducing local concentrations of pollutants in cities.

Requirements to achieve EV plan

According to the NITI Aayog, the following steps will help implementing EV based plans successfully

  • Providing Charging infrastructure
  • Increasing the efficiency of vehicles before converting all the vehicles to electric. This can be achieved by incentivising  developments to increase vehicle efficiency.