Tripura Leads The Country In Electric Vehicle Penetration: NITI Aayog

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Tripura took appropriate steps to increase the proportion of consumers with smart meters and improve EV penetration: NITI Aayog

Tripura scored a perfect 100 on SECI parameters for EV penetration

Himachal Pradesh scored 100 points on the availability of charging infrastructure

Government think tank NITI Aayog has released its comprehensive State Energy and Climate Index (SECI) report. The report throws light on the performance of various states in improving the climate and energy sector.

The report will serve as a national benchmark for states and a key indicator to monitor a state’s growth in the arena of energy transition. Gujarat performed the best among the larger states, with a cumulative score of 50.1. It was followed closely by Kerala and Punjab, who scored 49.1 and 48.6 on the SECI parameters, respectively. 

On the other hand, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Jharkhand performed the worst and were placed at the bottom of the index.

Among the smaller states, Goa led the pack with a score of 51.4. Tripura and Manipur followed closely with 45 and 36 points, respectively, on the SECI parameters.

According to the NITI Aayog, the index could be used by the states and union territories (UTs) to benchmark their performance against their peers, analyse the potential challenges to develop better policy mechanisms, and efficiently manage their energy resources.

The report, based on 2019-20 data, also gave a sneak peek into electric vehicle (EV) penetration across the states. Many big states such as Andhra Pradesh did not feature on the list owing to the lack of data on EV penetration in the state.

EV Penetration Picks Up

The government think tank perused data from the states for the report. It noted that the average EV penetration pan-India stood at 1.4% during 2019-20. It also found that the availability of charging infrastructure for emobility was ‘very low’ across the country.

According to the data, Tripura topped the country in terms of EV penetration. The report commended the state, saying it had taken appropriate steps to increase the proportion of consumers with smart meters and improve EV penetration. Tripura scored a perfect 100 on SECI parameters for EV penetration. 

It was followed by Delhi, which had a cumulative score of 84.7 on the EV penetration index. Assam also performed well, scoring 49.2 points. This trend, however, was somewhat less pronounced in case of other regions such as UT of Chandigarh, which scored 42.4, while Uttarakhand got 44.1 points. 

Sikkim and Odisha were the worst performers, scoring 1.7 and 2 points, respectively. Punjab, too, fared badly, with just 6.8 points, while Chhattisgarh secured 11.9 points. 

The states were also rated on the availability of charging infrastructure in their respective regions. Himachal Pradesh led the pack with a score of 100, followed by Karnataka with 23.5. Jharkhand was third on the list with a score of 16.1, while the national capital scored a mere 4.5 on the index.

It is pertinent to note that almost half of the states had no data on the availability of charging infrastructure, while four states had no data available on EV penetration. The paucity of data plagued not just the UTs such as Lakshadweep but also bigger states like Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Telangana.

The data does not paint an accurate picture of the current scenario owing to the lack of sufficient data, and information dating back to 2019-20. The shift to EV mobility has gotten a major push in the last couple of years. The Centre’s push in this area and burgeoning sales of EVs have also led to an increase in the number of charging stations across the country.

The Mega EV Push

In 2015, the government launched the Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of (Hybrid and) Electric Vehicles (FAME) scheme to give a push to EVs and hybrid vehicles. After the completion of the first phase of the scheme in 2019, the government launched its second phase.

According to the government data, subsidies worth INR 343 Cr were disbursed in lieu of sale of 2.78 Lakh EVs in the first phase of FAME scheme. In 2020, the government also sanctioned 670 ebuses for four cities and announced empanelment of vendors for 241 charging stations in  seven cities across the country.

In 2021, the Indian government approved the Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme for manufacturing advanced chemistry cell (ACC) batteries in the country with an outlay of INR 18,100 Cr. Another Production Linked Incentive (PLI) Scheme covering EV startups was also approved for the automotive sector with a budgetary outlay of INR 25,938 Cr in September 2021. More recently, the Maharashtra  government announced setting up of an EV-focused fund to help EV startups to scale up their operations. 

The Road Ahead

Despite these developments, the EV penetration in the country lags other major markets like China and the US. The lack of emobility infrastructure has been one of the biggest issues in the growth of EVs in the country. Besides, the recent spate of fire incidents involving EVs may also increase anxiety in the general public about their safety and dampen the mood around adoption of these vehicles.

Speaking to Inc42, Chargeup CEO and cofounder Varun Goenka said that the EV space was facing a host of challenges including proliferation of poor batteries, lack of software driven battery management as well as range anxiety. 

Chargeup is an EV startup that offers battery swapping service through its tech-enabled network.

Despite the challenges, the EV segment has been witnessing a major uptick in recent times.

According to sales figures shared by the Federation of Automobile Dealers Associations (FADA), the EV segment saw a 257% year-on-year (YoY) growth in FY22. 

According to an Inc42 report, EVs are estimated to have a 20% market share in the two-wheeler segment by 2030. The report added that the transactional market size of the segment is expected to grow to $20 Bn by 2030.

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