Climate advocates push humanity to switch their fossil-fuelled and carbon dioxide spewing vehicles to electric vehicles (EVs) to curb emissions.
During the COP26, there is much emphasis placed on expanding the uptake of EV’s and EV infrastructure but neglect other zero-emitting modes of transport like walking and cycling.
Timothy Welch, in his article on The Conversation, “Electric cars alone won’t save the planet. We’ll need to design cities so people can walk and cycle safely”, mentions that EVs are exciting for politicians and many businesses because they give the illusion that we are significantly reducing our environmental impact but do not require any lifestyle changes.
EVs simply replace ICE vehicles. It still allows people to drive long distances, authorities to expand urban areas and industries, which sometimes involves clearing forests and green spaces instead of “building up to achieve the scale our urban areas need for the efficient use of infrastructures like water, sewerage, electricity and public transport,” the article asserts (Welch, 2021).
EVs will still drive like ICE cars, kill people through accidents, take space for parking, causes congestions, and generate e-waste that can pollute our environment, and which we have yet to find sustainable ways to manage.
And besides, the price of EVs is still higher than traditional vehicles that only the wealthiest in our society or those with disposable income can afford. Those who fall in the middle to lower-income could not yet afford to swap their current vehicles.
The article argues that for EVs to fight climate change effectively means having one and require behavioural and lifestyle changes. It calls for people to drive less, use more active means of transport like walking and cycling, and public transport for longer trips.
Click the link below to read Welch’s insightful article:
Welch, T. (2021, November 17). Electric cars alone won’t save the planet. We’ll need to design cities so people can walk and cycle safely. The Conversation. Retrieved from https://theconversation.com/electric-cars-alone-wont-save-the-planet-well-need-to-design-cities-so-people-can-walk-and-cycle-safely