The Climate Group and the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation host Electric Vehicle (EV) leadership summit at Shanghai’s World EXPO 2010

International NGO The Climate Group convened an electric vehicle leadership summit yesterday at Monaco’s Pavilion at the Shanghai World Expo 2010 to explore how the world’s biggest and smallest countries are hoping to turn the world’s 1 billion vehicle fleet electric.

The summary findings of a new report by The Climate Group “Towards Market Transformation: Electric Vehicles (China)”, co-ordinated by Bain & Company, says that China’s policy-makers have put EV low carbon technology at the heart of their economic growth plan for the next 10 years, underpinning not only the nation’s economic developmental goals but social, environmental and energy security objectives too.

Emphasising the robustness, reliability and universal applications of electric vehicle technologies, Monaco car manufacturer Venturi Automobiles and partner PSA Peugeot Citroen launched a new world record attempt to travel 13400km from Shanghai to Paris in a 100 per cent electric truck, identical to those supplied to the French postal service ‘La Poste’.

The adventure’s environmental aims are supported by the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation. The Principality has had a strong policy of incentives for EVs for the last 15 years.

The Climate Group’s EV20 working group meeting in Shanghai is the latest in a series of meetings to build an international ‘coalition of the willing’ to rapidly advance the commercial deployment of EVs around the world. There will be further meetings in New York (US) and Cancun (Mexico) later this year.

Speaking at the Climate Group EV20 working group event:

HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco said: “EVs can drastically improve urban air quality and reduce the impact of transportation in the field of greenhouse gas emissions and consequently on our climate and our energy resource. In the future I am sure that the energy storage potential that fleets of EVs offer will help better integration of renewable power into our grid systems – the car of the future will be powered, I hope, by electricity coming from wind, sun or water.”

Changhua Wu, Greater China Director of The Climate Group said: “Climate change presents challenges and opportunities for every nation. It is only by all countries working together - big and small - that we will see the global market transformation we need in key low carbon technologies such as EVs. As the world’s largest auto market, China is in pole position to help lead this global clean industrial revolution and growth of this strategic domestic EV market could be exponential.”

Professor C.C. Chan, Fellow of the UK’s Royal Academy of Engineering, Academician, Chinese Academy of Engineering and President of the World Electric Vehicle Association said: “For developing countries like China, adaption to climate change is not only a necessary task but an urgent one. To reach the bold emission reduction targets China has set itself, we must put low carbon technologies at the heart of our economic strategy and to encourage our businesses and citizens to conserve energy and reduce emissions. The promotion of new energy vehicles including electric and hybrid vehicles is essential.”

Mr Yong Ren, Deputy General Manager and Fellow Senior Engineer of Chang’an New Energy Automobile said: “Right now the development of electric vehicle market is at a crossroads. Technology and government policy are the two major driving forces needed to grow this market. If we can deploy both of these, then I believe the day that changes the way the world travels is not far away.”

Gildo Pallanca Pastor, President, Venturi Automobiles, said: “The speed at which it could be possible to transform the world’s fleet to electric is exciting. At Venturi we are proving that EV technology is ready for commercial use. Our landmark Shanghai-Paris challenge will show EVs are not only better for the planet but are robust enough to cope with everyday use in any environment.”

Mr Liu Zhengyao, Senior Engineer and Deputy General Manager of Citic Guoan Mengguli (the company operating 60 electric buses for the Shanghai Expo) said: “Climate change is a crucial challenge to all beings on earth. We should take action from all perspectives as soon as possible, in order to contribute to energy conservation and emission reduction.”

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