The Central Government launched its Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of electrical al Vehicles (FAME) in India scheme in 2015 to market the manufacturing and adoption of electric vehicles. This was a part of India’s pledge in 2015 to scale back carbon emission intensity by 33-35 percent by 2030. Electric Vehicles (EV) also are a crucial tool to deal with pollution as Indian cities struggle with air quality. A recent study by Swiss organization IQAir found that 22 of the 30 most polluted cities within the world are in India. In fact, the study also concluded that 14 within the top 15 cities are Indian.
Despite efforts from national and state governments within the previous couple of years, EV penetration is merely 1 percent of India’s total vehicle sales. There are many barriers to the slow uptake of electrical vehicles like lack of charging infrastructure, vehicles’ availability, high cost of financing, etc. However, one among the important issues which are often neglected is that the public outreach for electric mobility.
Apart from devising tools to incentivize EV adoption, countries that are ready to motivate people to transition to EVs have focused on public outreach as a tool for EV uptake. These counties have worked on three key areas of EV awareness.
Creating the buzz
The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) study identified the shortage of awareness regarding EVs, their benefits, cost, and operation together of the many barriers affecting EV adoption in India. For EVs to seek out an area in our cities, tackling awareness at the individual level is of paramount importance. This month, the Canadian government launched the ‘Zero Emission Vehicle Awareness Initiative’ to stimulate more adoption through education and capacity-building activities. Similarly, EV outreach campaigns worldwide have aided the expansion of public awareness and luxury with EV technology. It’s seen that policymakers must form partnerships and collaborations with multiple stakeholders within the EV ecosystem to succeed in a wider group to tell and sensitize.
Bridging the policy formulation and end-users gap
Any successful public behaviour change is often achieved and sustained through continuous engagement, dialogue, and discussion between the govt and end-users. Despite any policy being strong in design, its implementation is sure to face challenges. to beat these and build charitable trust , continuous engagement with stakeholders to debate and understand these challenges is vital to achieving the targets as defined within the policy. Therefore, for any EV policy to deliver the type of impact the govt wishes, establishing a connection between the govt and end-users of the policy can help overcome any resistance they could harbour in switching to EVs. For instance , to boost public awareness of EVs in British Columbia , several partners, including the government , launched a public outreach campaign called “Emotive – the Electric Vehicle Experience”.
Dedicated Channel for Communication
While that specialization in awareness is prime to accelerate EV uptake by informing and educating the general public , outreach campaigns must also emphasize fixing a fanatical channel for the general public to speak with the policymakers to beat resistance and help build trust. This channel should act as a grievance redressal platform that connects the user to the body responsible for resolving queries and addressing any challenges. Social media has been used widely to act as a bridge between users and policymakers and help adopters in India. A consolidated one-stop solution for all things EV that collates relevant information that a consumer might require, including provisions of the policy, an EV model list, the situation of charging points, among others, can help address the knowledge gap.
EV uptake in India needs a fanatical specialise in a public outreach which will be critical to resolving doubts, addressing grievances, engaging in continuous consultations, building trust, and strengthening its resolve to realize targets.
The Delhi government took a step within the right direction by launching the Switch Delhi campaign. The campaign targets specific vehicle segments, RWAs, corporates, youth, etc to sensitize them to the advantages of EV and the way the Delhi EV policy has provisions for every of those segments to extend these zero-emission uptake vehicles. The eight-week campaign’s outcomes are often good learning for Delhi and therefore the remainder of the country.