Where's my electric car? | The Jackal

9 Jan 2013

Where's my electric car?

Yesterday, the Guardian reported:

Electric car sales rapidly picked up speed in 2012, with numbers almost doubling in the first nine months, ahead of a new generation of models by BMW, Ford and Tesla Motors arriving in 2013.

The acceleration hugely outstripped growth in the wider car industry, which saw a sales increase of just 5.4% in 2012 against 2011. The turnaround for the low-carbon cars' fortunes follows a £5,000 government grant launched in January 2011, which saw sales leaping in the first quarter of 2011 before quickly declining.

Although the uptake in the US isn't as good, this is most excellent news, with a dramatic increase in sales required to ensure less greenhouse gas emissions are produced from transportation.

Without a drastic reduction in the use of petroleum vehicles, climate change and its various negative effects on the planet will mean a reduction in mankind's progress, progress that is currently being inhibited by the status quo.

Despite the drastic circumstances of a warming planet, manufacturers are still overpricing electric vehicles in order to sell petrol cars that in the long run make them and the oil and gas industry more money.

Being that vehicle manufacturers are largely owned by the oil and gas industry, they're simply trying to offset the lost capital from people not filling up their tanks with petrol. It's not because of rare materials or a lack of technology; it's because of industry driven greed that electric vehicles are still unaffordable to the general wage earner.

The myopic situation of planned obsolescence unfortunately means that manufacturing companies are run on a purely shortsighted business model, without any real long-term projections taken into account as to the true cost of climate change.

There's no doubt that it will eventually start to eat into their profit margins, but until that happens, car manufactures aren't likely to start selling electric vehicles in accordance with what they actually cost to produce.

Even with government subsidies, the current level of uptake for electric vehicles is not enough to avert more climate catastrophes, and in most cases government's are only paying lip service to proper regulations, with the New Zealand’s government in particular entirely averse to implementing policy that could reduce carbon emissions through better transportation systems.

It's not all doom and gloom though, with a recent groundswell of activism ensuring a movement away from the reliance on fossil fuels. Demand for more clean and green alternatives is also set to increase and with the current low costs of manufacturing, we're certain to see more electric vehicles on our roads in the near future.