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Take-up for electric cars jumps, registrations this year already twice the rate for all of 2021: Iswaran

02:07 Min
Transport Minister S Iswaran said that collective action is needed for decisive climate action to tackle the transboundary nature of transport emissions. He outlined collaboration on sustainable aviation, such as with New Zealand, which could serve as a starting point for future work in greener fuels. Melissa Goh reports.   

SINGAPORE: Electric cars made up 8.4 per cent of all new car registrations in the first five months of this year, more than twice the rate in all of 2021, said Transport Minister S Iswaran on Wednesday (Jun 8). 

Compared to the whole of 2020, just two years ago, the 8.4 per cent represents a 20-fold jump.

Mr Iswaran cited these statistics to illustrate how Singapore's efforts to have all vehicles run on cleaner energy by 2040 are paying off. 

"We expect this momentum to gather pace," the minister said in his keynote address at Ecosperity Week, an annual sustainability conference organised by Temasek.

Addressing a common concern of electric car owners, he repeated targets the Government has already set to boost Singapore's charging network - 2,000 public housing car parks equipped with electric vehicle (EV) chargers by 2025 and a network of 60,000 chargers by 2030.

"In short, we want to take the anxiety out of range," said Mr Iswaran.

Earlier this year, Mr Iswaran announced a target to slash land transport emissions - which currently account for 15 per cent of Singapore’s total emissions - by 80 per cent by the middle of the century from their peak in 2016. 

He noted that industry partners have been increasing efforts to increase the adoption of EVs.

They include Surbana Jurong, which is working with SP Group to build an EV charging hub at its new global headquarters in the Jurong Innovation District. When completed, it will house 250 EV charging lots, making it the largest charging hub in Southeast Asia, said Mr Iswaran. 

The minister also spoke about efforts to decarbonise Singapore's heavy vehicle population, as part of a wider push towards green transport.

Aside from a target to introduce 3,000 electric public buses - half the total fleet - by 2030, Mr Iswaran also gave examples of industry players, such as logistics companies, using tax incentives to convert their vehicles to cleaner energy models. 

"Fleet operators such as DHL, Bollore and Kuehne+Nagel, are at various stages of piloting and deploying the use of EVs in Singapore for the delivery of goods," he said.

GREENER AVIATION AND MARITIME 

Turning to aviation and maritime transport, Mr Iswaran outlined Singapore’s plans to become a sustainable global hub of connectivity. 

Besides actively participating in initiatives such as the First Movers Coalition, as well as forging partnerships on sustainable aviation, the country is working to decarbonise both the aviation and maritime sectors.

"Our seaport and airport are among the most efficient in the world. To reach the next frontier of efficiency, we are investing heavily in digitalisation, which is better for the environment, and also for businesses," said Mr Iswaran.

He pointed to the Maritime Port Authority's  (MPA) DigitalPORT@STM - a one-stop portal for port transactions. This helps streamline port clearances and optimise the delivery of marine services for a faster turnaround and maximum fuel economy. 

Meanwhile, the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) is leveraging advanced air traffic management capabilities and working with aviation partners to optimise flight operations, which could help to reduce fuel burn and emissions of aircraft.

Source: CNA/yb(ac)
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