In China, 20% of New Buses Are Now Electric

©. BYD

The thing about change is, it's not linear. And it doesn't happen in every place at the same speed.

For the longest time, we've been writing stories when one University system orders 20 electric buses, or when one city commits to a major electric car fleet. Yet the idea that all buses might soon be electric seemed like a hard-to-fathom and far off dream.

Yet last week, Cleantechnica reported on a story that 115,700 electric buses were sold in China in 2016. This figure apparently represents a 20% market share of all new electric buses! Compare that to the 1,672 electric buses that were sold in 2013, just three years earlier, and you start to understand how rapidly the landscape is changing. Apparently, the city of Shenzhen is planning foran all electric fleet of 15,000 buses by the end of 2017!

Now, the flip side of this encouraging story is that the rest of the world has a long way to go before it can catch up. In fact according to EV Sales Blog (the original source for Cleantechnica's story), at the end of 2015 a full 98% of all the electric buses in the entire world were to be found in China.

Still, given the fact that China is rapidly becoming a world leader in clean tech industries, that it is flexing its muscle in terms of international climate leadership, and that other cities around the world suffer from the same types of diesel-driven air quality problems that China has become known for, I think we can expect China's success story to translate into rapid adoption elsewhere.

And when that adoption happens, I believe we'll be seeing the beginnings of the kind of disruptive demand destruction that could leave Big Oil in very serious trouble indeed.