Switzerland Mulling Bans on Electric Car Use Amid Energy Shortages

A Tesla Model X electric prototype automobile, produced by Tesla Motors Inc., is seen on display on the second day of the 83rd Geneva International Motor Show in Geneva, Switzerland, on Wednesday, March 6, 2013. This year's show opens to the public on Mar. 7, and is set to feature more than 100 product premiers from the world's automobile manufacturers. Photographer: Valentin Flauraud/Bloomberg via Getty Images

As a result of the ongoing energy crisis throughout Europe, Switzerland is considering a ban on the use of electric cars for non-essential purposes.

Owners of Teslas, Volts, and other electric cars in Switzerland may soon find themselves taking the bus, with the country reportedly considering a partial ban on using EVs as part of a host of measures aimed at saving electricity.

Like a whole host of other European nations, Switzerland’s energy situation is being significantly stressed as a result of Russia largely pulling out of Europe’s energy market, with the country seeming particularly concerned about its supply of electricity.

As a result, according to a report by Swiss newspaper 20 Minuten, the country’s government has drawn up a raft of emergency measures aimed at reducing strain on the power grid for use in emergency scenarios.

While measures such as limiting the total speed of cars, reducing the opening hours of shops as well as the amount of heating permitted at nightclubs are also planned, included in the government’s power saving scheme is a ban on the use of electric cars for non-essential purposes.

“The private use of electric cars is only permitted for absolutely necessary journeys (e.g. professional practice, shopping, visiting the doctor, attending religious events, attending court appointments),” a government readout on the restriction is reported as reading.

The Swiss government appears to be hoping that such measures will allow it to avoid “load shedding” — cutting off certain customers from their power supply — should electricity become scarce.

Although the Swiss government’s threats towards electric cars appear to be unique, the overall situation the country has found itself in when it comes to energy shortages is, unfortunately, far from unusual.

Since Russia largely pulled out of the continent’s energy market, European nations have been seriously struggling with securing their supply of energy, with various countries throughout the continent fearing blackouts this winter.

For example, Germany in particular appears to be in a very rough spot when it comes to the availability of both gas and electricity, with authorities in the country in active preparation stages for potential blackouts should things deteriorate.

France too may also be facing a rough winter, with French energy network tsar Xavier Piechaczyk recently warning that there was a very real threat that blackouts could hit the country.

Government spokesman Olivier Veran was seemingly keen to play down the warning, emphasising that there should not be a problem so long as the general public heed requests to save energy.

“We are not announcing to the French that there will be cuts,” the official reportedly said, though warned that he could not rule out “load shedding” should savings not be made.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here