Nordic EV Summit: Oslo’s agenda today is the rest of the world’s tomorrow
Norway is the world’s leading nation in terms of electric and sustainable mobility. Where else than in Oslo to organise the Nordic EV Summit, which this year united 950 participants from Europe, North America, APAC and Africa.
Curious to find out what is animating the discussions of a mature market like Norway, but also apt pupils like the Netherlands, Sweden and some pioneering cities and companies throughout the world, Fleet Europe booked a plane ticket to the Norwegian capital.
Yes, we sacrificed a part of the atmosphere and contributed to global warming by travelling by air (90 airborne minutes from Belgium) but in our defence, we combined the trip with a visit to Volvo in Gothenburg, Sweden (a media event on how to improve safety for all), and for this 300-km leg we used Bus4you – a recommendable experience.
Also in our defence: sometimes you have to cause a bit of harm if it serves a greater cause and undoes that harm. In this case, the greater cause is spreading the word that electrification is feasible and that it goes far beyond vehicles. Norway is paving the way for the rest of us by taking 'e' to the seas and even the skies - hence the theme "Planet Electric".
The key lesson is that no-one can do it alone and that all stakeholders – authorities, the automotive, maritime and aviation industry, leasing companies, data and infrastructure providers, fleets, universities – need to work together, but it also takes a few pioneers to set the example and convince the others. Remarkably, going electric in many cases also means driving down operational costs. It’s an investment that pays off.
If we make sure the electricity is sourced sustainably from renewable sources, that the raw materials for the batteries are sourced ethically and with recycling in mind, that we leverage data intelligence and that we share best practices, what a wonderful electric world this could be.
Key take-aways from this year’s Nordic EV Summit
Now that EVs are entering the mainstream, it is high time to ensure the raw materials are sourced ethically, that the supply chains are as short as possible and that recycling possibilities are maximised. See the panel discussion with Mark Dummett from Amnesty, Thore Sekkenes from InnoEnergy, Emma Nehrenheim from Northvolt and Yazid Saidi from Lithium Werks here:
Both the government and local authorities must set the example and drive mobility towards zero emission together. All layers of the population must be included, for instance by providing EVs in car sharing platforms.
Leasing companies such as Arval, ALD Automotive and LeasePlan have set targets to electrify their fleet over the next years. As the average car remains in their fleet for 4 years, they take a bet on the future. Legislative stability is a must to safeguard residual values and hence affordable EV lease contracts. Annie Pin, CEO of ALD Automotive Norway, explains:
The EV is constantly evolving and disruption will come from non-automotive players and start-ups. Nio, for instance, doesn’t put the car first, but the user experience. Rather than charging the car at a DC fast charger for 30 minutes, customers in China can go to a battery swap station and just a few minutes later continue their journey with a fresh battery.
Electric aviation is coming. By 2040 Norway wants to have 100% electric aviation for all of its domestic flights. In 2025 the first commercial electric aircraft is to be operational. It will start with small, short-haul planes. As battery technology evolves, bigger aircraft can be developed.
Reducing CO2 by going electric can also drive down operating costs, both in the air and at sea. Norway plans 70 pure electric car ferries within 3 years, then ban all emissions in UNESCO protected fjords by 2026. Norway’s first all-electric ferry drives down CO2 emissions by 95% and operating costs by 80%.
Photo credit: Rolf Wüstenhagen (Twitter)
Picture and video copyright: Dieter Quartier/Nexus Communication, 2019 (unless otherwise stated)