China has unveiled a plan to make at least 30% of government vehicles electric by 2016. In a bid to fight pollution and promote fuel efficiency, the new cars will be fuelled by alternative energy sources.

Environmental policy

The Chinese authorities have mandated that from 2014 to 2016, new-energy cars will account for at least 30% percent of newly purchased vehicles in state departments. Local provinces will also be required to meet the target after 2016.

The government has set a target of five million new-energy vehicles on the road by 2020. It’s hoped that these will help polluted cities, including Beijing, reduce often hazardous smog levels. Central Government ministries and agencies will take the lead on buying new-energy vehicles including electric cars and plug-in hybrids.

To support the initiative, the authorities will exempt electric vehicles and other types of new-energy vehicles from purchase tax. The exemption applies to imported and domestic vehicles, and will begin in September and last to the end of 2017.

Emerging market

This new mandate is expected to provide a boost to the new-energy car market.

Local governments will have to build accessible charging stations, opening the market to consumers interested in green energy cars. Having a substantial network of rapid charging points could provide an incentive for drivers to invest in low-carbon vehicles.

Organisations and public institutions involved in the initiative will have to add parking spaces reserved for the electric cars.

They’ll also have to ensure that the ratio of charging facilities to the vehicles is equal, according to the plan. Local officials will be held responsible if they don’t meet the targets.

Energy efficiency

Green technologies are on the rise, with China adopting electric buses, trams and light railways. The city of Shenzhen has the world’s largest carbon-free public transport fleet, consisting of all-electric buses and taxis.

The city plans to have 6,000 electric buses in service by 2015. This could potentially transform the transport industry and make huge energy savings.

Have you considered how an electric vehicle could reduce your carbon emissions, fuel costs and business energy consumption?

Do you have an electric car? How does this benefit your business? Leave a comment below.

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