Europe is now beginning to embrace electro-mobility - but one Nordic nation which adopted that stance years ago - and serves as a shining example to other nations as Europe's surge towards mass electric vehicle deployments builds momentum. Norway has been leading the charge and announced its intentions to phase out all fossil fuel-powered vehicles by 2025! However, Norway's modern approach towards electric vehicles isn't an initiative which was launched in the millennial era - no, in fact it started in the early 1990s!
Oslo like many other neighboring Scandinavian cities and towns boasts impressive public transportation infrastructure. Bus-lane access for electric vehicles (EVs), recharging stations, privileged parking and toll-free travel for all electric automobiles are the norm in Nordic nations. However, this ambitious and truly innovative initiative was first launched in Norway as part of its effort to reduce pollution, congestion and noise in urban centers.
Since the rollout of this program in the 90's - the project has been an overwhelming and resounding success. Today, Norway has the highest per capita number of all electric (battery only) cars in the entire world - which when transferred into numbers results in over 100,000 in a country of a population of 5.2m people. Last year, for example, EVs constituted for almost 40% of the country's newly registered passengers cars. That trend is likely to continue, especially when you consider the nations pledge to phase out ALL fossil fuel-powered vehicles by 2025. Norway was also announced as the 'Happiest Country in the World'.
Norway opened up the world's fastest-charging station, which claims to be able to charge up to 28 vehicles in just half an hour. In addition to this, the Netherlands have also declared its desire to phase out all fossil fuel-powered cars by 2025. Elon Musk, CEO of US electric car colossus Tesla, responded to Norway's announcement by tweeting, "What an amazingly awesome country. You guys rock!"
The Nordic nation is the electric vehicle pacesetter in Europe - and with the targets set by the Paris climate deal a lot of other nations are expected to follow suit. It's been estimated that Norway has around 500,000 electric vehicles. China leads the world in EV usage, with about 600,000 all-electric vehicles on its roads and an ambitious plan to deploy 5 million EVs by 2020.