Governments around the world have set various goals that call for a certain number of EVs to be on their roads by a stated date. Surely the most ambitious plan yet heard was announced this week in the Netherlands, where lawmakers put forth a proposal to allow only zero-emission cars to be sold in the country starting in 2025.
A majority of the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of the Dutch parliament, voted for a motion brought by the political party PvdA that would greatly accelerate the country’s commitment to electrifying its transportation system (under an agreement reached in 2015 with the International Zero-Emission Vehicle Alliance, the Netherlands has already pledged to make all new passenger vehicles sales electric by 2050).
The Netherlands is one of the world’s top EV hotspots – over 43,000 plug-ins were sold there in 2015, representing 9.6% of the overall auto market.
The ambitious proposal has a ways to go before it becomes law, and already faces opposition. While several parties supported it, a spokesman for the party VVD said that 15% of EVs by 2025 would be a more realistic goal. “It seems crazy to get this plan to work. I think we’ll have to withdraw from the Energy Agreement,” said VVD leader Halbe Zijlstra, referring to the Energy Agreement for Sustainable Growth, a national energy policy that was adopted in 2013.
PvdA leader Diederik Samsom disagrees, saying that the plan is feasible, and that it has nothing to do with the Energy Agreement. “That agreement runs until 2023,” said Samsom. “We are free in what we do after that. We are ambitious, perhaps other parties are less so.”