No Fumes in the Future
Electric vehicles – including self-driving cars – are clearly the future of personal transportation, but the question remains to be answered: “ when does the future begin?” If the Netherlands completes all the process, the answer is now. There are moves within the country to ban all petrol and diesel vehicle sales by 2025. Only new electric cars would be approved on Dutch roads – although existing fossil-fuel-based vehicles could continue wandering about until their engines give out.
While it’s an extreme proposal, a majority of the lower house in the Dutch parliament supported the motion, so there’s a chance it could be passed into law. Under the plan, all emissions-based cars would be outlawed, at least in terms of new sales. That means fuel-efficient hybrids would also be banned, although hydrogen fuel cell cars would be permitted.
It’s an ambitious plan, and it’s certainly not the first time the Netherlands has backed the environment with big ideas in terms of transport technology. The country is currently working on a 100 percent wind-powered railway system, and is even building solar technology into its roads.
Even though the Country has much grater number of electric vehicles than most other countries, the most remarkable thing about the proposed vehicle emissions ban is how short the time frame is – less than a decade – to turn the Netherlands’ existing auto industry into a wholly electric marketplace.
Nobody knows for sure, and there’s certainly dissent among the Dutch themselves. Some critics have alrady called the proposal overambitious and unrealistic. Currently, the debate is taking place, therefore, it remains to be seen whether the motion will pass into law.
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