Switzerland could ban electric vehicle use during energy crisis: reports

Switzerland may ban the non-essential use of electric vehicles this winter as government officials face an energy crisis during the winter months.

The Telegraph reported on Saturday that Swiss authorities have drafted emergency resolutions that restrict the use of electricity if things get bad this winter.

ev charger

FILE: Electric cars are parked at a charging station in Sacramento, California, Wednesday, April 13, 2022. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File/AP Newsroom)

For example, stores may be required to reduce their hours, streaming services may be required to be limited and buildings may be heated to only 20 °C, or 68 °F.

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According to the Telegraph, other restrictions could include concerts, theater performances and sporting events, all to prevent blackouts.

Switzerland is preparing for possible blackouts as the country relies on imported energy during the summer months. While more than half, or 60 percent, of the country’s energy comes from hydroelectric sources, production slows in the winter months and the country becomes dependent on imports.

The war in Ukraine has contributed to a reduction in imports across Europe, but combined with Switzerland’s reliance on hydropower, as The Telegraph put it, the country is “vulnerable to energy shortages”.

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The country’s emergency plan is divided into two levels: crisis and emergency. It also has three levels of restriction in the first level and two levels of restriction in the third level.

The Swiss authorities will activate each tier and tier depending on the supply level. At the very least, buildings would only be heated by 20 degrees Celsius. As things accelerate, electric vehicles will be limited to essential travel, and in worst-case scenarios, concerts and sporting events will be shut down.

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Additional measures such as turning off escalators and holiday lights, silencing leaf blowers, and banning cryptocurrency mining are also included in the plan.

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