As the country moves toward net zero emissions by 2050, the heavy transportation sector feels “forgotten.”

Australia is a truck-dependent nation, with transportation accounting for the second-highest share of carbon emissions in the nation after energy production.

The majority of the emissions are from road transportation, with trucks and buses accounting for more than 20% of the total, according to the federal government.

A small business on the Central Coast of New South Wales is trying to solve the problem by turning used diesel trucks into electric cars (EVs).

But according to Lex Forsyth, CEO of Janus Electric, the sector does not believe that the federal government is on its side.

“We’re all aware of the federal [government’s] electric vehicle strategy [but] I think they just forgot about road transport,” he stated.

No obvious route
A governmental framework to boost the nation’s adoption of EVs was provided by the governmental Electric Vehicle Strategy, which was unveiled in April.

According to the plan, the government would create a national mapping tool to encourage the development of charging infrastructure and Australia’s first fuel efficiency benchmark for new light vehicles.

Mr. Forsyth claimed that it did not offer a clear way ahead for the electrification of large vehicles.

Traditional diesel vehicles are narrower and lighter than electric trucks.

According to Mr. Forsyth, this raises their operating costs.

He noted that the NSW government’s net zero emissions freight program recently addressed these particular issues.

A two-year pilot that allows zero-emission trucks to use the state’s road network and receive mass limit discounts is a component of that program.

While it was commendable that states like South Australia, Victoria, and NSW were implementing similar programs, Mr. Forsyth insisted that a national strategy was required.

“They’ve got to have consistency,” he stated.

“Because one rule in New South Wales might not apply in Victoria, and trucks transit across borders.”

Rules and rewards are required.
According to RMIT research fellow Ali Amani, it is the responsibility of governments to make sure that transportation laws are updated.

“We need to first update the regulations all around Australia in order to make sure that we can accommodate these new technologies on the road,” he stated.

“These updates should be well aligned with the available international practices as well.”

The federal government raised the total width restriction for trucks from 2.50 meters to 2.55 meters when it changed the national road vehicle regulations in September.

Ben Neville, a sustainable business expert at Melbourne University, stated that small changes would have a big impact.

“It’s only an increase of 5 centimetres, but it may mean that … suddenly we have access to a greater range,” said Dr. Neville.

“There’s just so many small, detailed regulations that can potentially be obstacles to us getting the vehicles into and available in our market.”

Incentives, he claimed, were also necessary for businesses to invest in electric vehicle technology.

Dr. Neville stated, “They’re currently piloting these [weight] increases [in NSW].”

“And if they are only temporary, that might not give different trucking companies the certainty to be able to make those investments.”

In response to demands for an interview, the Department of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development stated in a statement that the Australian government was “developing a net zero 2050 plan.”

A representative for the plan stated that it would address all significant economic sectors “and support the transition towards net zero, including a pathway to roll out low and zero carbon heavy vehicles.”

The spokesman added that Australia’s government was dedicated to promoting the availability, affordability, and modernization of heavy vehicles with reduced or zero emissions.

Author: utdinfo_2ye1ln

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