The Western Australian Government has just released the state’s first ever Electric Vehicle Strategy, which aims to encourage and increase the uptake of low and zero emission vehicles in the state.
The strategy will be accompanied by the almost $21 million Electric Vehicle Fund – including the largest single investment in EV charging infrastructure in Australia by a State or Territory Government.
The strategy is a key element of the Western Australian Climate Policy that commits to delivering a cleaner, more sustainable environment through the increased uptake of low and zero emission vehicles.
The strategy will facilitate the creation of Australia’s longest, and one of the world’s longest, electric vehicle charging infrastructure networks – from Perth to Kununurra in the North, Esperance in the South and Kalgoorlie in the East.
Western Australians and visitors will be able to access fast charging stations along major travel routes in the regions, town and city centres, and tourism sites. Construction of the network will also create jobs in metropolitan and regional areas.
The State Government will lead by example by increasing its own fleet of electric vehicles, committing to a target of acquiring at least 25 per cent electric vehicles across eligible vehicles in the state fleet. To support the State Government’s electric vehicle fleet target, electric vehicle charging stations will be installed in government buildings.
The strategy will also facilitate EV uptake by developing and updating standards, guidelines, and requirements for planning approval, as well as improving levels of consumer awareness and knowledge.
Premier Mark McGowan said, “Electric vehicles provide a pathway towards decarbonising road transport and improving air quality in Western Australia. The industry also has huge potential to create jobs for Western Australians.
“Western Australia has the skills, infrastructure and standards to become a key player in the global battery value chain.
“The global uptake of electric vehicles is one of the most exciting opportunities for Western Australia to create jobs and support economic growth as part of the low-carbon transition.”
Global and domestic uptake of electric vehicles presents significant opportunities for industry and jobs growth in WA. In recognition of this, the strategy supports the uptake of hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles, aligned with the Western Australian Renewable Hydrogen Strategy, as well as the initiatives in the Future Battery Industry Strategy released in 2019.
In 2019, the Western Australian Government committed to working with all sectors of the economy to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The adoption of electric vehicles powered by increasing levels of renewable energy will be fundamental to reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the transport sector.
Innovation and ICT Minister, Dave Kelly, said, “This announcement represents an exciting time in Western Australia, with the state contributing some of the most significant funds of any Australian jurisdiction towards charging infrastructure that will facilitate the uptake of this environmentally sustainable technology.
“The EV Strategy will see Western Australia become home to one of the world’s longest electric vehicle charging infrastructure networks in a single state, enabling drivers of low or zero emissions vehicle to travel from Perth to Kununurra in the north, Esperance in the south and Kalgoorlie in the east.”
Environment Minister, Stephen Dawson, said “The actions outlined in this Strategy are an important element of the Government’s Western Australian Climate Policy.
“Increasing the uptake of electric vehicles is an important element to achieve a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and achieving the McGowan Government’s aspiration of net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.”