US-China Electric Car Project Kind of Misses the Point

The BYD E6 Electric Car

The BYD E6 Electric Car

Andrew Revkin at Dot Earth has a good discussion with Lee Schipper about the problems with the US-China deal on producing electric cars.  Without repeating the post, the essence is that zero-emissions cars don’t solve the traditional problems that planners have been struggling with for a long time.

“Creating a zero-carbon car for China tomorrow won’t solve the much bigger problems of urban congestion, traffic fatalities and the paving over of once-beautiful cities to make room for more cars,” Dr. Schipper said. “The discussions should back up. Energy is only a means to an end. What are the ends, urban access and mobility, or cars for a small minority?”

This isn’t to say that China and the US shouldn’t be building electric vehicles.  Only that a carbon-free car is just that, a car, with all its other attendant issues and urban design challenges/drawbacks.

One thought on “US-China Electric Car Project Kind of Misses the Point

  1. So exactly how will these hyperexpensive, tax subsidized, COAL powered cars reduce pollution, greenhouse gases, sprawl, land use dis,tortion, obesity, and traffic injustice?

    Oh, that’s right they won’t. Not even close.

    Somebody needs their paradigm shifted.

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