EURELECTRIC Welcomes Political Initiative to Coordinate Electrification of European Transport

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The European Commission's latest legislative proposals on clean transport fuels provide a welcome signal that the EU intends to press on with electrification of the transport sector, EURELECTRIC said today, following the publication of the Communication on Clean Power for Transport.

"Electricity is clearly the way forward for European transport: it reduces CO2 emissions, saves energy, improves air quality and reduces noise. That is why the European electricity industry has already invested significantly in advancing e-mobility - and I am happy to see today that the Commission supports this aim,"said Secretary General Hans ten Berge.

Electric vehicles will also benefit Europe's citizens by stabilising Europe's future power system: used intelligently, they can balance the growing shares of decentralised and variable energy sources such as sun and wind. EURELECTRIC therefore welcomes the Commission's recognition of the need for such "smart charging", and its vision of electric vehicles as an integral part of tomorrow's smart grid/smart home. Electric vehicles will provide crucial load management capabilities for the distribution grid, thereby reducing connection costs for consumers.

"In particular, EURELECTRIC applauds the Commission's intention to take regulatory action on common standards for European charging infrastructure, should no agreement be reached as a result of on-going standardisation work. Standards are indispensable for the widespread roll-out and acceptance of this technology,"said Mr ten Berge.

A coordinated European effort to encourage market up-take of electric vehicles through more and better information is welcome, as is the harmonisation of financial incentives. In this context, and in the interest of coordinated policy, the announced urban mobility package to encourage up-take of electric vehicles should be published as quickly as possible.

The Commission today also proposed binding national targets for the development of public charging infrastructure, as a means to ensure adequate availability and encourage market up-take. EURELECTRIC shares this aim, and we therefore welcome the Commission's call on governments to put forward policies supporting the infrastructure roll-out. Governments should also ensure that appropriate market models are in place to achieve the targets in a way that is best suited to their respective electricity markets and mobility needs.