As we reported this morning, Finland’s government announced its most recent climate goals this week and became the latest of a series of countries announcing their plans for an imminent phase-out of coal-fired power plants, but the country also announced its ambition to dramatically increase the number of electric vehicles on its roads.
Finland is looking at its nordic neighbor Norway, which is the world’s leader in EV per capita with soon over 100,000 electric vehicles, and it wants a similar future for its own national fleet.
With only about 2,000 electric vehicles today, Finland has a lot of catching up to do, but now the government wants to add 250,000 electric vehicles on its roads by 2030.
The Helsinki Times reports that it’s the number of electric cars, in addition to a planned 50,000 natural gas vehicles, required for the country to hit its new emission reduction targets:
“The Finnish Government has committed to reducing emissions from transport by 39 per cent relative to the levels of 2005. The transport sector currently produces roughly 11 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions, accounting for 40 per cent of all emissions covered by the emissions trading scheme, and will have to make up 3.6 million tonnes of the 6 million tonnes in emissions cuts the country has committed to delivering.”
Apparently, the government hasn’t decided yet on the exact measures to help achieve those goals, but one of the options being considered is a €100 million investment to provide a €4000 discount at the purchase of an electric vehicle. It obviously wouldn’t cover the entire 250,000 EVs, but it would cover the first 10%, which should give enough time for electric cars to gain more market shares and become more affordable without subsidies.
Finland is also looking to support a local auto industry to produce electric cars. Last year, a local startup called Toroidion introduced its first vehicle, a 1 MW all-electric supercar.
Tesla also entered the market in 2014, but only with a relatively small investment through a store and service center in Helsinki and a few Supercharger stations. The company has since only sold a few hundred cars in the country and it has a much stronger presence in neighboring countries like Sweden and Norway.