Will Fully Electric Cars Survive in Rural Areas?

Electric cars are predicted to account for 81% of all the EVs sold by 2030. This is about 25.3 million cars which is far beyond their counterparts – PHEVs. With a third of all these EVs expected to find their ways to the remote areas and even permanently be assigned for use in such areas, shall they survive?

Driving the newest Ford Everest model- All-New Jazz 1.5 Luxe Hybrid ECVT down the dusty paths in your rural area may is good. It adapts to every region as it uses a motor to charge its battery. But thinking of Volkswagen e-Up for your next trip may not be a good idea.

With the UK having already drafted a law that’s likely to see a ban on new sales for petrol and diesel cars by 2035, are they prepared to counter the challenge in rural areas? And like many other countries in Europe, how will the fully electric cars survive in rural areas?

Undeniably, urban centres are always the pioneers of most technologies. Equally, they usually get the lion’s share in all goodies. This is likened to the number of electric car charging stations in the urban centres versus the rural areas.

Countries like the US, Iceland, UK, Denmark, Norway and Sweden have the most electric vehicles on their roads. The US currently has over 100,000 electric car charging outlets with California alone having 32,000. China is leading in the number of electric charging stations. But like the other nations, the charging outlets and charging stations are concentrated in the big cities.

A research conducted by Technavio projects the electric vehicle charger market growth rate for the period 2020 – 2025 to be at a CAGR of 29%. China is taking the lead with Europe and North America trailing behind.

On the positive note, a more rapid growth is being witnessed in the residential segment which comprises of multi-dwelling buildings, homes and office buildings. This mean more electric vehicle chargers are going to be installed in rural. Penetration of EVs in the rural areas where travel distances are shorter is likely to grow at a higher rate than anticipated.

Most countries with large uptake on EVs have already laid down massive public electric charging infrastructure. If they adopt the Chinese infrastructural system, ideologies and offer incentives to investors, every EV owner will be covered.

Not many nations are thinking of robust electric charging infrastructure covering both rural and urban centres as the only way to attract a considerable uptake on EVs. It’s this factor that hinders many potential customers living in rural from buying one.

This scenario may change sooner than is expected if charging stations are installed in new buildings and charger points in busy streets and car parks as directed by the UK government.

With companies like Charge My Street taking the charging challenge to the villages by installing charging units on village halls and market centres, electric car enthusiasts are a happy lot. Again, as individuals and companies like Chargepoint continue to install electric charging stations in cottages and houses in remote areas, fully electric cars are likely to survive in rural areas.

And with countries supporting the use of electric vehicles due to their eco-friendliness and efficiency, we are likely to see the same happening to the charging infrastructures. The process may be slow in the remote villages for a short while.

But as the policies and regulations to end the sale of diesel and petrol cars approaches and competition among the electric vehicle charging station companies races up, charging points will definitely increase in the local villages.

About Salman Zafar

Salman Zafar is the Founder of EcoMENA, and an international consultant, advisor, ecopreneur and journalist with expertise in waste management, waste-to-energy, renewable energy, environment protection and sustainable development. His geographical areas of focus include Middle East, Africa, Asia and Europe. Salman has successfully accomplished a wide range of projects in the areas of biomass energy, biogas, waste-to-energy, recycling and waste management. He has participated in numerous conferences and workshops as chairman, session chair, keynote speaker and panelist. Salman is the Editor-in-Chief of EcoMENA, and is a professional environmental writer with more than 300 popular articles to his credit. He is proactively engaged in creating mass awareness on renewable energy, waste management and environmental sustainability in different parts of the world. Salman Zafar can be reached at salman@ecomena.org or salman@bioenergyconsult.com
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