Norway’s Battery Electric Vehicles and Public Health- Findings From the Literature

Olalekan John Okesanya*, John Michael B. Saclolo, Kristine Bernadette Presno Mia, Blaise Ntacyabukura, Victorita Corman, Attaullah Ahmadi, Ryan Rachmad Nugraha, Jiangchuan He, Joeydann M. Telin, Ugyen Utse Tshering, Ynusa Abdullahi, Jerico Bautista Ogaya, Florante E. Delos Santos, Sharon Ann Pedrajas-Mendoza, Melchor M. Magramo, Don Eliseo Lucero-Prisno, M. B.N. Kouwenhoven

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debate

Abstract

The transportation sector is among the highest contributors to the increase in greenhouse gas emissions in European nations, with private cars emerging as the primary source. Although reducing emissions presents a formidable challenge, the emergence of battery electric vehicles (BEVs) offers a promising and sustainable avenue toward achieving zero greenhouse gases within the transportation infrastructure. Since the 1990s, the Norwegian parliament has fervently supported this transition, leveraging public awareness campaigns and a range of financial incentives for its users nationwide. The widespread utilization of BEVs promises substantial health benefits, including ensuring cleaner air for all citizens regardless of their socioeconomic status and fostering improvements in public health outcomes. This transition potentially curtails hundreds of thousands of annual deaths attributed to climate change, enhances the quality of life, bolsters civilian productivity, and fuels economic and population growth. The adoption of BEVs offers a myriad of advantages, including reduced health risks and premature mortality, as well as a quieter environment with diminished noise pollution. Nonetheless, the integration of BEVs necessitates robust road infrastructure with considerable maintenance costs, alongside limitations on driving range for users. Concerns arise regarding potential particle emissions from BEV tire wear due to the increased weight of batteries compared to conventional vehicles. Rapid acceleration capabilities may accelerate tire degradation, contributing to higher particle emissions, of which only 10% to 20% remain suspended in the air, whereas the majority settles on road surfaces, posing a threat to nearby aquatic ecosystems when washed into water bodies and soils. While BEVs hold promise for valuable benefits, successful policy creation and implementation require a detailed awareness of their limitations and challenges to ensure a comprehensive approach to sustainable mobility and public health improvement. Therefore, more research on the limitations of BEVs can help inform improved tactics for maximizing their benefits while limiting potential disadvantages.

Original languageEnglish
Journal Environmental Health Insights
Volume18
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2024

Keywords

  • electric vehicles
  • EVs policy
  • greenhouse gases
  • Norway
  • pollution
  • public health

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