Owners of electric scooters and electric motorcycles can earn money with the greenhouse gas reduction quota by selling CO2 certificates. This is also possible for 45 km/h vehicles.
Certificate trading is the keyword. For years, Tesla made billions from the sale of carbon credits. Since 2015, the greenhouse gas reduction quota (GHG quota) has stipulated targets for reducing CO₂ emissions for oil companies. Since 2019, electricity has also been rewarded with GHG quotas as an environmentally friendly and low-emission fuel. And since 2022 even triple counted. Private owners of electric scooters and electric motorcycles can now benefit from this.
Marcus Fendt from the technology company The Mobility House explains in the MOOVE podcast how making money works with the GHG quota.
It doesn’t matter whether it’s green electricity or not
Whether the electricity for the electric vehicle comes from a renewable source is currently (still) irrelevant. Owners of electric scooters or electric motorcycles could charge their vehicles with coal electricity and then sell their certificates to the coal electricity producer, some might think at this point. Theoretically yes. In practice, “but no one can only book electricity from coal. And compared to other types of drive, an electric car always saves CO₂ in operation because it is considerably more efficient,” says colleague Gregor Hebermehl from auto-motor-und-sport.de about certificate trading for electric cars.
Whether private or commercial
In addition, the proportion of green electricity in Germany has increased rapidly in recent years: “According to the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems (ISE), the proportion of green net electricity in Germany was 50.5 percent for the first time in 2020 – more than half of the electricity generated was So sustainable (…)”, says Hebermehl. The article on auto-motor-und-sport.de goes on to say:
“Whether the vehicle is registered privately or commercially does not matter for the authorization – and owners of several vehicles can also sell a certificate for each individual vehicle. The costs are calculated based on a flat-rate value set by the Federal Ministry for the Environment (BMU), which undergoes an annual adjustment. The BMU has announced a value of 1,943 kilowatt hours for the year 2022. The BMU credits the electric car owner with the CO2 difference that occurs when generating 1,943 kWh with petrol.”
Every owner could apply for a certificate from the BMU themselves, but processing through an intermediary makes more sense. For large customers, such as coal-fired power plant operators, the administrative burden for small individual certificates is too high. In the course of this, a whole start-up scene has already developed, which bundles the certificates of individual vehicle owners and offers them in packages. The intermediaries then earn their money with a commission that is deducted from the proceeds from the certificate holders. Our colleagues from auto-motor-und-sport Luca Leicht and Gerd Stegmaier explain exactly how this works in the podcast with Marcus Fendt.
Remuneration depends on the vehicle class
Depending on the provider and market value, the proceeds from the certificate for 2022 should probably be between 250 and 350 euros. The amount of the remuneration also depends on the vehicle class. Since the Federal Ministry for the Environment only differentiates between three classes for the GHG premium – M1 (cars), N1 (commercial vehicles) and M3 (buses) – all electric two-wheelers automatically fall into the car class and also collect the same premium. To apply, the owners only need the vehicle registration document (registration certificate part I). The note “Electric” must be entered in field P.3. Payment is made once a year. The amount fluctuates due to the constantly changing legal and economic framework. This income is taxable, but may fall under an exemption limit appropriate to the type of income, with the exemption amounting to 256 euros per year.
GHG premium also for 45 km/h vehicles
Class L1e/L1e-A vehicles, i.e. 45 km/h electric scooters, 45 km/h electric motorcycles and S-Pedelecs can also benefit from the new regulation. “However, a registration certificate part 1, i.e. the so-called vehicle registration document, is required for successful certification, just as with an e-car,” says the information from the provider Elektro Vorteil.de. This means that instead of the normally sufficient insurance number, owners have to voluntarily register their 45 km/h two-wheelers. This works in the same way as with a car or motorcycle. Taxes are not due for this and an HU is still not required. Like all other electric scooters and e-motorcycles, the 45 km/h two-wheelers can then get the same bonus as an e-car.
The extent to which it makes sense to allow electricity from non-renewable sources to be traded in certificates is questionable. But in view of the fact that there are no other subsidy options for electric motorcycles in Germany, the GHG quota is better than nothing. And if the annual insurance premium is paid through the premium, every owner will be happy.
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