Electric cars are great, but are they really the key to hitting our green targets?
In Europe the industry has taken off, and in the UK more electric cars were sold last year alone than in the previous decade.
However, according to the Climate Change Committee, the Government’s ambitious plan to cut CO2 emissions by 68 per cent by 2030 will require 46 per cent of the UK’s 35 million cars to be zero-emission vehicles by the same year.
Based on 2020 car ownership levels, this would mean replacing around 16.1 million cars with electric vehicles. To achieve this, almost every single one of the approximately 2 million new cars registered in the UK each year would have to be electric over the next nine years. It’s an ambitious target.
Is there a better and more beneficial path to success than investment in electric cars? Shouldn’t we rather be investing in trains, buses and roads? Electric vehicles may look like an efficient and sexy fix to our emissions problem, but is transport infrastructure investment more economically, societally, and environmentally sustainable?