It took a freak hailstorm that destroyed large amounts of Canberra to convince Tim Crofts to switch his petrol car for an electric vehicle.
"The old car we had was a write-off in the hail storm and we needed to get something else, and everyone was already on the market for second-hand petrol cars," Mr Crofts said.
"I had always thought I would want an electric car one day, but last year I was in a different position and thought, 'Let's do it'. It's been worth it."
After putting down money on a Tesla Model 3 at the beginning of 2020, the Kambah resident has not looked back.
"There has been a lot of behavioural changes that have happened with it," he said. "When we go shopping, I always prefer malls that have chargers with them and I'm always thinking about where to charge.
"When it's a really cold, frosty Canberra morning, and you pull out your phone and turn on the car to the right temperature and get into a garage that isn't spewing with fumes, it's really good."
Since first getting behind the wheel of an electric vehicle, Mr Crofts said he's been noticing more of the zero-emission cars on the road.
And he's not the only one.
New data has revealed the number of electric cars registered in the ACT has almost doubled in just the past 12 months.
Registration figures showed there were 662 electric cars as of July 2020, but that number increased to 1151 in July 2021.
A further 20 zero-emission vehicles, powered by hydrogen, were also registered in the ACT after being secured as part of the territory government fleet.
A large part of the rise in new electric cars in Canberra was due to the recent two-year waiver of registration fees for zero-emission vehicles.
Since the waiver came into effect on May 24, more than 184 vehicles were registered with Access Canberra.
Government data also revealed Mitchell had the most electric vehicles out of any Canberra suburb, with 97 registered. However, the high number was likely due to vehicles registered to car dealerships in the area.
The highest residential suburb for electric vehicle use was Garran, with 36, followed by Kambah with 32, Belconenn on 26 and Campbell on 25.
Suburbs including Phillip, Ainslie, Civic, Dickson and Bruce rounded out the top 10 areas for electric vehicle use.
One of the areas of Canberra with the most electric cars registered to it was Capital Hill, thanks in part to zero-emission cars that were part of the federal government's fleet.
Rob Ogilvie, the director of all-electric vehicle showroom Ion DNA, said it was not surprising zero-emission cars were on the rise in Canberra.
"There has been a real shift in the mindset of people about sustainability and transport solutions," Mr Ogilvie said.
"A lot more of the education and the messaging about electric cars is starting to work, and the more cars that are out there, the more people will want to ride in them."
It's expected more people will take up an electric car following the launch of the ACT government's sustainable household scheme, which will provide interest-free loans to people up to $15,000 to help meet the up-front costs to purchase a zero-emissions vehicle.
An ACT government spokesman said electric cars would be available as part of phase two of the scheme, which will begin later in the year.
"Transport emissions now account for around 60 per cent of the ACT's greenhouse gas emissions and of these emissions, around 70 per cent are from private vehicles," the spokesman said.
Mr Crofts said his electric car had been a game-changer in the year he has driven it, and wouldn't even think about returning to a vehicle reliant on petrol.
"More people are making the decision to get one because they're being seen more and more on the road," he said.
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