Electric vehicles could be 60% of cars on London roads by 2030

14th October 2016

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  • Pollution & Waste Management


Sageer Vayalil

Changes in urban transport, including the switch from petrol to electric cars, could have far reaching impacts on the world's major cities, according to a new study by Bloomberg New Energy Finance and McKinsey & Company.

The report, An Integrated Perspective on the Future of Mobility, claims the urban environment is primed for dramatic change, with social, economic and technological trends working together to disrupt existing mobility models.

Colin McKerracher, head of advanced transport at Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF), said: ‘Vehicles and the way they are used will change more in the next two decades than they have in the past 100 years, due to falling battery costs and the advance of connected technologies.’

The report considers three directions of travel for future transport:

  • Clean and shared – mainly in cities in emerging economies, such as Delhi and Mexico City.
  • Private autonomy – covering high-income suburban sprawl where passenger miles could grow by 25% by 2039, mostly in autonomous vehicles.
  • Seamless mobility – in densely populated high-income cities like London and Singapore where electric vehicles (EVs) could represent 60% of all vehicles on the road by 2030.

According to the report, EVs and the rise of renewables, together with autonomous driving and car sharing, will have strong mutually reinforcing effects. The advent of autonomous driving in the 2020s, for example, will boost the use of EVs in high-use services.

Surya Ramkumar, co-leader of McKinsey & Company’s Future of Mobility Initiative, said:

‘Sectors along the mobility value chain face disruption. The power sector could see a 3% increase in demand globally. Petrol retailers could explore new ways to monetise assets through electric charging, connected car, fleet or non-fuel services.’

The report highlights clean air as a key benefit from EVs and other advanced mobility models and points to metropolitan areas, such as Greater London and Amsterdam that are beginning to introduce a wide range of measures that favour low-emission vehicles, as a way of reducing airborne pollution.

In a separate study, BNEF forecast that EVs would have a 35% share of new light-duty vehicles markets worldwide by 2040. It also said that the growth in EV battery demand would drive down transport costs and help integrate more renewable energy generation into the electricity mix through distributed energy storage, which in turn will cut urban pollution.


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