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Can our cars be emission free by 2040?

Yesterday, it was widely reported that UK environment secretary Michael Gove has announced plans to ban the sale of new petrol and diesel cars in Britain by 2040. 23 years doesn’t seem like a great amount of time to make this change, seen as through the vast majority of cars across the UK are not electric. 

Over the water, in France, it seems that they have set trend and the UK is now following their lead, amongst other countries to improve the air quality that they affect. This seems hugely ambitious as Gove also says that he plans to enforce a ban on hybrids along with petrol and diesel cars, meaning the entirety of the United Kingdom will only be able to purchase electric cars. Electric cars that currently, only 4% of people in the UK drive.

6 years ago the government released a statement saying that they wanted all cars sold after 2040 to be of zero-emissions and have no petrol or diesel fuelled cars on the road by 2050. So it seems that Gove has raised an already ambitious plan, good luck to him, but we can’t see the plan going as well as it does on paper. Surely it’s just too big a job?

Though the scheme is now set over the next 2 decades, and is said to cost around £3bn, campaigners still seem to think that this isn’t enough. The ‘green revolution’ in some people’s opinion doesn’t make enough of an immediate impact and without scrapple schemes or immediate clean air zones, they don’t feel happy with the speed of progress. The campaigners ammunition in this argument is the amount of deaths that are linked with air pollution in the UK, that is around 40,000 a year.

Electric Car Charging Station

Electric Car Charging Station

There is no surprise when scientists arise in force to tell us that too much bad pollution cause by our lifestyles, industries and the cars we drive not only damages the environment but also damages our health. The whole idea of zero-emission cars does make sense, but whether or not it’s actually feasible is a whole matter in itself. The things that many people wouldn’t take into consideration, including myself is the impact it would have on the National Grid. With the demand of fuel being completely removed from petrol and diesel, it’s estimated that the National Grid would see a 50% increase in output during peak times.

Jaguar I-PACE concept.

Jaguar I-PACE concept.

What would this mean for the many car and motor shows up and down the country?
Granted, car manufacturers would be putting a huge amount of time into creating new and ambitious designs, but as it stands, electric cars just aren’t great to look at. If we look at cars like the Nissan Note, or the BMW i10, they leave a lot to be desired if you want to feel the bees knees in your new car. Although, evidence can be seen that some are way ahead of the game than others. Jaguar have recently released a concept of their first all-electric car, the I-PACE (not to be confused with the iPhone, this is a lot bigger). This thing is a genuinely great looking car, one I certainly wouldn’t be turning my nose up at because of its new emission free insides. Plus, with a 0-60mph of 4 seconds on the top models, it may not disappoint those who knows a thing or two about the all round performance of cars.

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