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ECN publication
Electric vehicles in urban areas: A case-study for Amsterdam: social acceptance, environmental effects, and the consequences for electricity ; production and distribution.
Published by: Publication date:
ECN Policy Studies 1992
ECN report number: Document type:
ECN-C--92-084 ECN publication
Number of pages: Full text:
133 Download PDF  

As part of the "Electric Drive Systems (EDS)" programme of the European Community, a study has been carried out concerning the effects of a large scale introduction of electric vehicles in the city of Amsterdam on the environment and on electricity distribution and production. The study is based on a detailed investigation of car traffic on a working day in Amsterdam. It is assumed that in principle all cars which regularly drive in Amsterdam can be replaced by an electric vehicle. Several scenario’s, with market shares ranging from 20 to 80%, are developed to describe the possible effects. The effects on the local environment are calculated using the so-called CAR-model (Calculation of Air pollution by Road traffic), by which concentrations of CO, benzene, NO2 and black smoke can be determined. Calculations for the year 2000 show that the legal limits of CO are met everywhere. With regard to benzene, NO2 and black smoke, large scale introduction of electric vehicles reduces the total street length exceeding legal limits considerably, especially for benzene and black smoke. The effects on noise pollution are less significant, since only electric buses and trucks reduce the average noise level. With regard to electricity distribution it is concluded that in the future load management will be essential, in order to avoid capacity problems in the local grid. The opportunities for (fast) charging during daytime are limited. It is furthermore concluded that electric vehicles will be much cleaner than internal combustion engined cars, despite drastic improvements of the latter. The reason is that electricity production will also become much cleaner than today, even if the role of nuclear energy and renewables is very small. Finally, the social acceptance of electric vehicles by inhabitants of the inner city is measured by means of a questionnaire. Although the attitude of most citizens is positive, it is recognized that electric vehicles are not the solution for all traffic problems.

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