WASHINGTON - The International Energy Agency (IEA) hopes there will be at least 20 million electric vehicles on the road worldwide by 2020. In support of those targets, the ministers of participating nations are launching the Electric Vehicles Initiative (EVI), which will provide a forum for global cooperation on the development and deployment of electric vehicles.
EVI commenced at the Clean Energy Ministerial in Washington, D.C., meeting July 19-20. Participating countries pledged to continue discussions through high-level roundtables organized by the IEA during the Paris Motor Show in the fall of 2010 and the Shanghai Motor Show in the spring of 2011.
Participating governments include China, France, Germany, Japan, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States. Other initial partners include the International Energy Agency.
Participating countries agree to:
1. Launch a pilot cities program to promote electric vehicle demonstrations in urban areas
2. Share information on funding levels and research and development programs on electric vehicle technologies to ensure their collective investments are strategically addressing the most crucial global gaps in vehicle technology development
3. Share information on electric vehicle deployment targets, as well as best practices and policies, to enable progress toward those targets.
Electric vehicles have become a strategic focus of the automotive industry during recent years, but the technology is still nascent in the global marketplace. EVI is a government-led global initiative that will collaborate with industry, academic and end-user stakeholders to bolster electric vehicle sales.
Participating countries will establish pilot projects in several cities for the demonstration of electric vehicles in public transportation and government use. They may also share experiences from existing pilot projects. The specific technologies that will be the focus of the pilots may include hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs), plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), all-electric vehicles (AEVs), and fuel cell vehicles (FCVs).