Programs to encourage buyers to opt for greener vehicles, like last summers Cash for Clunkers program that was offered in the United States really work. Not only do these program stimulate the economy by offering an incentive for consumers to spend, but they also help cut the overall greenhouse gas emissions by replacing not-so-green cars with more eco-friendly alternatives.
The Cash for Clunkers program offered rebates of up to $4,000 for consumers trading in older vehicles for newer models with an EPA rating of at least 10 miles per gallon higher. More than half a million vehicles with a higher fuel efficiency were sold in the United States during the length of this program. In the past, European countries have had programs that were similar to the US Cash for Clunkers program which have been reported as being equally successful.
Now that the Cash for Clunkers program has ended, the United States national and state governments, as well as other countries, continue to implement rebate programs and incentives for eco-friendly vehicles. The electric vehicle, or EV, has several ongoing programs throughout the world.
The United States is currently offering a federal income tax credit up to $7,500 for the purchase of a fully electric vehicle. Also, depending on which state you reside, you may be entitled to other financial incentives. In Georgia, for example, you’ll also receive another $5,000 tax credit on your EV.
California residents receive an even greater incentive. In March of 2010, The California Air Resources Board began offering rebates for hybrid, and zero emission vehicles, as well as some commercial grade trucks. This rebate program is part of a more than forty-million dollar program which is geared to encourage advances in clean engine technologies. New vehicle owners will receive up to $20,000 until the program funds are exhausted or the program otherwise ends.
Canada is also really pushing for new car owners to purchase electric vehicles. Ontario, for example, is aiming for five percent of all of its vehicles to be electric within the next ten years. The government is backing this movement with generous rebates which were originally offered at $10,000 and now at $8,500.
The United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland offers rebates to off set the price of a new EV by providing rebates of up to $7,800. While France who personal and commercial electric vehicle use has been high since EV’s hit the market, also offers rebates on these plug-n cars; however, their rebate is valued only up to $6,500.
While these incentives are essential for the promotion and acceptance of greener vehicles, they can’t and won’t last forever. But, if we don’t start taking small steps towards greener living, our Earth won’t last forever either.