Paris, France --- (METERING.COM) --- May 18, 2012 - Electric vehicles (EVs) are popping up on streets around the world, as different cities promote the vehicles in a variety of ways, a new review by the International Energy Agency (IEA) has found.

Urban programs are seen as critical by the IEA for reaching the target of 20 million EVs worldwide by 2020, in order to increase energy security and reduce CO2 emissions.

The IEA’s EV City Casebook: A Look at the Global Electric Vehicle Movement reviews EV activity in 16 cities/regions in nine countries – Amsterdam, Brabanstadt, Rotterdam, Barcelona, Berlin, Hamburg, Helsinki, Stockholm, Northeast England, Goto Islands (Nagasaki), Kanagawa, Shanghai, Los Angeles, New York, Portland and the Research Triangle, NC in U.S.A.

Together these cities and regions account for about 30 percent of the early global EV market.

Each of them have put in programs and targets, but their approaches range broadly, with different cities offering just some or many options. These include providing EVs for mass transit or taxis, offering short rent individual cars, and using technology to create information traffic systems. Many cities are buying and using EVs for municipal fleets, and some provide special road lanes. Some programs subsidize vehicle purchases directly while others offer incentives for use, like discounted parking or tolls. Many facilitate recharging through financial assistance or stations or both. Many of the infrastructural benefits are made prominent, to encourage use.

“Whether motivated by job creation, consumer demand, improved mobility, or benefits to air quality and the environment – any city of any size and population mix can begin EV deployment using the lessons learned (from these cities),” commented Tali Trigg, energy analyst with the IEA.