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Insight of the Day: Electric cars will make bigger impact on emissions than electric homes

According to a report by the Climate Council, selling more fuel-efficient cars in Australia will have a greater impact on reducing carbon emissions than disconnecting all homes from gas. The analysis found that the New Vehicle Efficiency Standard proposed in Australia could potentially reduce carbon emissions from transport by 20 million tonnes in 2030 and by 80 million tonnes in 2035. These emission cuts are estimated to be equivalent to the carbon emissions saved from disconnecting all Australian homes from gas for more than two years.

Despite some compromises in the government's proposal, such as allowing more generous emission allowances for commercial vehicles like utes, vans, and large SUVs, the fuel-efficiency standard is expected to be introduced in January 2025. The Climate Council's analysis compared the emissions from 5.1 million homes connected to gas with the projected emissions reductions from the proposed vehicle emission cuts.

The findings highlight the importance of investing in energy-efficient forms of transport to reduce climate pollution. The head of policy and advocacy at the Climate Council, Jennifer Rayner, emphasized the significance of capping the amount of climate pollution produced by new cars and providing Australians with access to clean and efficient vehicles.

The report suggests that the government's next step in reducing transport pollution should involve greater investments in active transport options such as cycling and walking infrastructure. By promoting shared and active transport, Australia can further reduce climate pollution and provide sustainable and healthy transportation alternatives.

Overall, the study underscores the potential of fuel-efficient cars to make a substantial impact on reducing carbon emissions in comparison to disconnecting homes from gas. It emphasizes the need for Australia to prioritize energy-efficient transportation and explore additional measures to enhance sustainable mobility.

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