19 November 2013

The paradigm shift towards more sustainable mobility has already begun. Faced with pollution, raising petrol prices and the growing demand for vehicles from developing economies such as China, zero-emission transport is emerging as the most reliable and environmentally responsible option. Spain has already made progress in this field.

As the data available clearly shows. At this moment in time, according to the IDAE (Institute for Diversification and Energy Saving), there are 5,580 electric vehicles on our roads. 437 new electric cars were registered in 2012, which is 19,07% more than the previous year, and the perspectives for the future are positive. In global terms, it is expected that 27 million electric and hybrid cars will be sold in 2020, and more than 1,000 million in 2050, according to the International Energy Agency.

Despite these advances, the sector still faces a number of important challenges. How to improve the lifespan and capacity of the batteries and reduce costs; to reduce the time required for charging them and to extend the infrastructure network of recharging stations to make longer journeys possible. Spain currently has 773 public recharging stations, but only nine of these offer rapid charging facilities. There are, however, over 500 recharging stations in Catalonia (65% of which are in Barcelona) and it has 15 rapid charging facilities.

The authorities are actively promoting the use of electric vehicles. For example, the Ministry of Industry, Energy and Tourism grants subsidies for the purchase of these vehicles as part of its MOVELE plan . The Generalitat de Catalunya, for its part, also offers tax breaks and support through ICAEN and Barcelona City Council. Besides these incentives, what else can be done to ensure public acceptance of electric vehicles?

The President of the World Electric Vehicle Association (WEVA), Angel Aghili, considers that technological development will drive the shift towards a paradigm for mobility that is more environmentally conscious: “The industry worldwide is working hard to develop electronic solutions to the problem of sustainable mobility. I personally believe that inductive charging systems will prove to be crucial in generating broader acceptance of electric mobility.

Aghili is convinced that inductive charging is a very promising branch of technology. In fact, he considers that the advance of wireless inductive charging will remove any remaining doubts about the autonomy of electric vehicles, as he puts it “Just imagine driving along the road while the car uses a dynamic induction system powered by renewable energy to charge itself”. This would solve the problem of energy storage that these vehicles currently face.

For more information please visit the EVS21 website