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How Maharashtra's big switch to EVs will help India cut emissions by 1 billion tonnes by 2030

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Delhi is emerging as India's EV capital and Maharashtra has also woken up to the climate clock in right earnest. It promises to register only EVs and vehicles powered by clean fuels like hydrogen from 2030. Closer to the present, 2022 on, the state’s urban local bodies will buy only electric vehicles. And plenty else.

How Maharashtra's big switch to EVs will help India cut emissions by 1 billion tonnes by 2030
Marking a radical shift towards electric vehicles, the Maharashtra government is planning to register only EVs and vehicles that are powered by carbon emission-free next-generation fuels such as hydrogen from 2030. The state will soon start deregistering petrol and diesel vehicles and completely ban them from 2030, Mint reported, quoting people aware of the development.
Maharashtra’s Electric Vehicle Policy 2021
Maharashtra introduced the revised Electric Vehicle Policy 2021 earlier this year with the aim to drive in at least 146,000 new battery-operated electric vehicles (BEVs) by 2025, which would make up 10 percent of all new vehicle registrations in the state by then, Hindustan Times had reported. The policy also aims to subsidise 100,000 electric two-wheelers, 10,000 cars, 20,000 goods carriers (both three and four-wheeler), 15,000 e-autos and 1,000 e-buses.
The state government has also entered into an agreement with the Indian arm of the USA-based Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) to provide technical support for faster adoption of EVs in the state.
The new plan to fast-track electrification of vehicles by registering only EVs from 2030 is being led by Aaditya Thackeray, Maharashtra’s Tourism, Environment and Protocol Minister.
Impact of the move
The move will help bring down the country’s total projected carbon emissions by 1 billion tonnes in less than a decade and help achieve the reduced carbon intensity target promised at COP26.
India is aiming to reduce the carbon intensity of its economy by 45 percent, a cut of projected carbon emissions by one billion tonnes by 2030.
“Considering the increasing vulnerabilities to climate change, Maharashtra wants to be at the forefront of green innovation and green economy,” Mint quoted a spokesperson for Maharashtra’s Environment Department as saying.
The spokesperson added that the state cabinet has acknowledged the climate emergency elucidated in the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report.
The IPCC has called for immediate steps to mitigate climate change that will result in extreme weather events in India and South Asia.
What is the state doing?
In the last 50 years, Maharashtra has witnessed a six-fold increase in the frequency of extreme floods and a seven-fold increase in drought events.
From 2022, the urban local bodies (ULBs) in Maharashtra will start buying only electric vehicles. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corp (BMC) has already started buying EVs. The Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport (BEST) is working on plans to run an all-electric bus fleet by 2027 and is targeting 2,100 electric buses by 2023.
“Eighty percent of Fifteenth Finance Commission’s NCAP (national clean air programme) funds will be used to buy electric buses,” the spokesperson said told Mint, adding that over 5,000 buses have been bought across the state from this fund.
The state’s compensation for climate change disasters in the last 18 months has crossed $1 billion.
Other states
Apart from Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Chandigarh are also trying to phase out fossil-fuelled commercial fleet by 2030. Chandigarh’s draft policy also states that only EVs will be registered in the city from 2030.
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