IEE Says 5 to 30 Million Electric-Drive Vehicles Will be on US Roads by 2035

5 years ago by Eric Loveday 2

IEE Chart of Electric Drive Vehicles on US Roads Based on 3 Scenarios

IEE Chart of Electric Drive Vehicles on US Roads Based on 3 Scenarios

The Institute for Electric Efficiency (IEE), a division of the Edison Foundation, says 1 in 10 vehicles on US roads will be electrified by 2035.  Here, electrified does not include those conventional hybrids, which always seem to skew our task of presenting only plug-in figures.  Not this time though, says IEE in its latest report titled “Forecast of On-Road Electric Transportation in the US (2010-2035).”

BMW i3 Concept Coupe

BMW i3 Concept Coupe

The report presents 3 scenarios (6 actually, but we’re ignoring 3 of them due to confusing and complex explanations attached to them by IEE…full PDF here) and even under the most conservative of scenarios, more than 5 million light-duty electric-drive vehicles will be on US roads by 2035.  This figure could  jump to 30 million EVs if advances in battery technology and gas prices cooperate (more on this later).

IEE developed three scenarios for electric transportation: low, medium, and high. These scenarios are based on EIA’s Annual Energy Outlook (AEO) 2012 Reference Case, advances in battery technology and oil prices increasing to $200 per barrel:

2014 Fiat 500e

2014 Fiat 500e

Under the low electric transportation scenario, based on the AEO 2012 Reference Case, electric light duty vehicles (LDV) comprise 2 percent of the registered vehicle stock (5.3 million out of 276 million light duty vehicles), and electricity consumption increases by 33 TWh in 2035. The switch to electric LDVs reduces vehicle emissions by about 9 to 22 million metric tons of CO2 equivalent in the year 2035 based on a 2035 power generation mix. The specific reduction depends on improvements in internal combustion engine (ICE) technologies, as well as changes in the electric power generation fuel mix.

Under the medium electric transportation scenario, based on advances in battery technology, electric LDVs comprise 10 percent of the registered vehicle stock (24.8 million out of 261 million light duty vehicles), and electricity consumption increases by 112 TWh in 2035. The switch to electric LDVs reduces vehicle emissions by about 41 to 94 million metric tons of CO2 equivalent in the year 2035 based on a 2035 power generation mix. The specific reduction depends on improvements in ICE technologies, as well as changes in the electric power generation fuel mix.

LEAFs Lined Up

LEAFs Lined Up

Under the high electric transportation scenario, based on the advances in battery technology and high oil prices ($200/barrel in 2035), electric LDVs comprise 12 percent of the registered vehicle stock (30.4 million out of 256 million light duty vehicles), and electricity consumption increases by 147 TWh in 2035. The switch to electric LDVs reduces vehicle emissions by about 51 to 116 million metric tons of CO2 equivalent in the year 2035 based on a 2035 power generation mix. The specific reduction depends on improvements in ICE technologies, as well as changes in the electric power generation fuel mix.

The IEE’s explanations and scenarios are loaded with details, but there’s one figure under each scenario that we’d like to focus on.  Low: 5.3 million EVs out of 276 million vehicles.  Medium: 24.8 million EVs out of 261 million vehicles.  High: 30.4 million EVs out of 256 million vehicles.

Sure, there are a lot of variables to come into play, according tot he IEE, but which scenario (low, medium or high) do you think we’re most likely to experience in the future (2035, as the IEE report says)?

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2 responses to "IEE Says 5 to 30 Million Electric-Drive Vehicles Will be on US Roads by 2035"

  1. MrEnergyCzar says:

    The peaking of cheap, easy to get, conventional oil back in 2006 is the dominant driver….

    MrEnergyCzar

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