Electric future? Global push to move away from gas-powered cars

(The Guardian, 13 Sep 2018) Business and political leaders commit to make more vehicles emissions-free – and plan to bypass US government to do so.

Political and business leaders gathering in San Francisco for a major climate change summit have committed to moving towards what was once a fantastical thought – the demise of the internal combustion engine in cars, trucks and other vehicles.

A group of 26 city, business and regional or state leaders, representing a 122m people around the world, have used the Global Climate Action Summit to call for car makers to quicken the pace of electric vehicle rollout. Twelve cities, including Santa Monica, Tokyo and Greater Manchester, have pledged to deploy only zero emission buses from 2025.

This follows a move by 19 US cities and counties to increase the number of electric vehicles in their own fleets and promises by businesses such as Ikea, which plans to make its home deliveries emissions-free, to shift away from gasoline-powered cars and trucks.

“This demand added together really gives auto companies the message that they need to signal the end game for the internal combustion engine,” said Helen Clarkson, chief executive of the Climate Group, which is behind the zero emission vehicle challenge. “When you see cities making these sort of commitments, it creates a new normal in the market. Transport is a bit behind on the curve of the energy transformation but we are really seeing things move now.”

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The Guardian, 13 Sep 2018: Electric future? Global push to move away from gas-powered cars