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Sustainability Events

Do Electric Vehicles Need Subsidies?

Hanna Breetz

  • Assistant Professor, School of Sustainability, Arizona State University

Deborah Salon

  • Assistant Professor, School of Geographical Sciences and Urban Planning, Arizona State University

Battery electric vehicles (BEVs) are an important pathway for decarbonizing transportation and reducing petroleum dependence. Although one barrier to adoption is the higher purchase price, advocates suggest that fuel and maintenance savings can make BEVs economical over time.

In this talk, we will discuss a five-year Total Cost of Ownership for conventional, hybrid, and electric vehicles. We will highlight the impact of key parameters, including depreciation, fuel prices, taxes, and incentives, and show that both federal and state incentives were necessary for BEVs to be cost competitive.

Hanna Breetz is an assistant professor in the School of Sustainability and her research examines the political economy of energy policy, including biofuels, electric vehicles, and renewable energy. She holds a PhD in political science from MIT. Prior to joining the faculty at ASU, she was a pre-doctoral fellow in Energy Technology Innovation Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School and a post-doctoral fellow in public policy at the University of California-Berkeley.

Deborah Salon is an assistant professor in the School of Geographical Sciences and Urban Planning. She studies transportation in cities with the goal of understanding how these systems work — and how policy and smart investment might improve transportation and reduce automobile dependence. She holds a PhD in agricultural and resource economics from the University of California-Davis. Before joining the faculty at ASU, she was a post-doctoral fellow at Columbia University’s Earth Institute and held a research appointment at University of California-Davis’s Institute of Transportation Studies.

Monday, October 29, 2018
1:45 - 2:45 p.m.