Not even Labor believes in its electric car policy

Labor unveils its prototype electric car.

Spending billions on electric cars is one of Bill Shorten?s key election promises. As Shadow Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research, Senator Kim Carr is the person who has to sell the policy to the electorate.

The trouble is, he?s already told us what he thinks of it. Quote:

Kim Carr, Bill Shorten?s industry spokesman, last year warned that electric vehicles posed serious ?social ?issues and would require a one-third expansion in electricity ?production?urged a Senate committee to consider ?the reality versus the mythology? of electric vehicles, just six months before standing alongside Mr Shorten to launch Labor?s signature electric car policy.

The Victorian senator told the Senate?s electric vehicle inquiry, chaired by independent senator Tim Storer, that the high cost of electric vehicles would put them beyond everyday drivers. ?The electrification issue does pose really serious social (issues). There?s an in-built demographic question there about people who can afford the Tesla, versus some of these smaller vehicles,? he told the committee last September.

?And if you?re away from a ?regional centre of any size then the capacity to actually use these vehicles is somewhat limited. So I think that needs to be clear when we?re talking about the reality versus the mythology.? End of quote.

As I wrote recently, Shifty Shorten?s policy will make bugger-all difference to the global climate, while costing ordinary Australians billions, just so wealthy greens can park their smugmobiles outside their expensive, inner-city terraces. Six months ago, Carr was conceding the same argument about ?really serious social issues?. Unlike today, he also questioned the lack of evidence from spruikers of electric cars. Quote:

Senator Carr tackled the head of the Fast Cities consortium during the inquiry, questioning his suggestion that electric vehicles would stabilise the energy network without the need for a one-third expansion in energy output. ?What evidence do you have for this?? he asked Fast Cities head of corporate development Paul Fox. ?No one else is telling us that this is going to be able to be done without an expansion in the capacity of the grid.?

Senator Carr said more batteries were ?not the answer to our ?energy problems?, declaring: ?If you put a one-third increase in ?demand on the energy system, we?re going to actually need to ?increase our generation capacity.? End of quote.

That generation, now and for the foreseeable future, is going to be almost entirely fossil-fueled. In which case, Labor?s policy will actually increase emissions.

Carr is trying to fudge, now. Quote:

He said yesterday he stood by his comments, arguing regulatory changes were needed before electric car batteries could be used to feed back energy into the grid to ensure car warranties were not voided. ?We have to change the regulations, we have to change the building codes,? he said. End of quote.

Which conveniently ignores the real problems he previously identified: the increase in electricity generation (and concomitant rise in emissions) and, most important, the fundamental inequity of taxpayers subsidising rich peoples? virtue-signalling. Quote:

He said the government had offered ?no policy direction? on the introduction of electric vehicles, which Labor wants to increase to 50 per cent of new vehicles sold by 2030. The government estimates they will make up 25 per cent to ??50 per cent of new car sales by 2030. End of quote.


If electric cars are so wonderful, people will buy them. The internal combustion engine didn?t triumph because the government outlawed horses and carts. Let the market decide, without splurging taxpayers? money on what even the socialist Carr once agreed are green follies.