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Byron Shire
October 28, 2021

Parties’ electric vehicle plans lack power: NCC

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The ALP state candidate for Ballina, Asren Pugh, says new shopping centre car parks in Ballina and Byron shires would be required to include electric vehicle (EV) charging stations if Labor is elected in March.

Mr Pugh was speaking in support of the party’s EV policy, announced on Monday (January 28), which would require 25 per cent of state fleet vehicles to be electric by 2025.

Labor would also allocate $10 million to the rollout of additional fast charging stations in strategic locations across NSW.

And it would change planning laws to require electric charging outlets in new strata buildings and other developments such as shopping centres and parking stations.

‘There are a number of new shopping centres currently being planned or built across the Ballina and Byron shires [that] should have provision for charging electric vehicles,’ Mr Pugh said.

Lacking vision

But the Nature Conservation Council says that both Labor’s policy and the Coalition’s (which would require just 10 per cent of government fleets to be EV or hybrid by 2020) ‘lack vision’.

NCC’s senior climate and energy campaigner, Dr Brad Smith, said both parties’ commitments ‘pale in comparison to the ACT, which will ensure 100 per cent of new vehicles in its fleet are electric by 2021’.

‘Where is the vision from the main parties in NSW? This state should be leading the nation, but these plans will leave us in the back of the pack.

‘Transport accounts for almost 20 per cent of Australia’s climate pollution, so we need to transition from petrol and diesel to electric vehicles power fed by clean energy as quickly as possible.

‘Electric vehicle sales are starting to take off in Australia, having increased 67 per cent in one year from 2016 to 2017 but a lack of charging stations and other infrastructure is holding the industry back,’ Dr Smith said.

But Mr Pugh is calling on locals to come on board Labor’s EV plan.

‘Climate change means we need to take action to electrify the transport sector. We can run our cars on renewable electricity instead of burning oil. This policy would greatly reduce our emissions and support the industry to become more cost effective for the average family.

‘I’m interested in the community’s thoughts, where would you put charging stations on the North Coast?

‘With the right infrastructure and support in place even regional areas like ours could be a mecca for electric vehicles,’ he said.

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  1. EVs are coming! We need to prepare!
    Because Europe, Asia are moving for high uptake of EVs, this will cause a price shift very quickly. As less Petrol (etc) vehicles are sold, the development costs per car will increase, so the price will increase. EVs are the opposite: very simple mechanicals, Batteries becoming cheaper as well as increasing quantities will make EVs cheaper. I think the pricing might reverse in less than 10 years with EVs being cheaper than other vehicles.
    Australia needs to prepare! Particularly in the country, we need to ensure:
    -Charging infrastructure needs to be supplied in all towns, carparks etc. This can be slow charge points that might be in carparks, at employment parking, shopping centres, etc. Fast chargers are needed at reasonably distanced points, with multiple vehicle charging for motorists on the move. (Apparently the Tesla truck has 6 fast charge points, & charges in about 40 Minutes for instance).
    -Rural servicing: There needs to be servicing facilities in the rural towns. Also servicing information needs to be made available for 3rd party service agents so vehicles can be serviced by non-manufacture service facilities. (This needs to be mandated in Australia! Not all rural towns have all manufacturers servicing available.)
    -Warranty on Vehicles & Batteries: Australian vehicle warranty is weaker than offered overseas. Now Australia does not manufacture motor vehicles, we should get warranties equal or better than offered overseas. (eg US Warranties on Imiev & Outlander batteries are much more comprehensive than Australian warranty offerings: I know I have checked as an owner!)
    It is in Australias interest to move quickly to Electric powered transportation: Australia no longer produces Fuel, so any replaced imports will reduce our balance of payments. Also because there is no fuel transportation, safety is increased, & rural prices will reduce. A Definite win-win for consumers.
    There is also a need to assist rural businesses to retrain & equip for the EV uptake. There needs to be assistance & courses to retrain Vehicle technicians (a-la mechanics) to safely work on these new vehicles. (TAFE courses & government assistance required)
    There has already been a study that found the existing Electric supply will be able to cope with the coming EV uptake. Personally, I think the next revolution will be in Electric Traction in Agriculture. There are already turn-key containerised solar power generation & storage available. Robotised tractors that are smaller than current tractors can work 24/7 relatively quietly, & (automated) charging can be interleaved.

    Vive la Revolution!

  2. Charging in shopping centre parking will only work when they also install solar over the parking area. Cheaper electricity for the shopping centre, supply electricity to surrounding commercial and residential areas and charge cars. Shopping centres have large areas with no shade from buildings or trees. It has to be a win win.

  3. Putting the cart before the horse, Asren.
    How about you and the NSW Labor party tell us your POLICY on stopping new and expanding coalmines (and stopping CSG in the Pilliga)? And while you’re at it, what is the NSW ALP POLICY and your detailed PLAN to rapidly transition from coal and gas to 100% renewables before the planet is fried?
    Yet you announce this piddly plan to get us to consume more fossil fuel-produced electricity?
    Conclusion – Labor is not the lesser of two evils and hasn’t been since Whitlam was rolled. Vote Green.


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