The Centre for Research on Energy Demand Solutions (CREDS) in the UK has released a report based on existing research called Shifting the focus: energy demand in a net-zero carbon UK. The study highlighted that electric vehicles aren’t actually the best form of transportation when considering environmental impact or urban traffic.
Due to their lower operation cost, electric cars are likely to increase, contributing to further congestion in cities. While electric cars do provide a more environmentally sustainable alternative to gas powered vehicles, they do not address the issue of congestion or inactivity. The CREDS report found that active forms of transportation such as electric bikes, were better solutions to reducing traffic and alleviating health concerns.
The study found that over time, electric cars will likely increase the number of cars on the road due to their lower cost to operate than gas vehicles. This will result in further congestion in cities, an increase in urban sprawl and potentially negative societal health impacts in the form of obesity.
The report states:
“Relying mainly on electrification of vehicles to reach carbon targets can have the consequence of increasing traffic congestion because of the lower cost and lower taxation of electric fuel. Everyday travel should be shifted to the most sustainable modes. Priority on roads should be given to walking, cycling (including e-bikes and e-scooters) and public transport.”
ELVITEN aims to establish and integrate a network of Electric Light Vehicles in six pilot cities: Malaga, Berlin, Trikala, Genoa, Rome and Bari.