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EVs most green option, says Hitachi

Date: 08 March 2011

Green car technologies must be judged not only on their CO2 emissions but also other harmful gases and particles found in conventional cars, according to Hitachi Capital Solutions chief executive Simon Oliphant.

After a recent Which? report suggested that electric cars may create as much overall pollution as a frugal conventional diesel car, Oliphant said to "get a true view of how clean different technologies are the comparison needs to be done from "well to wheel", including the CO2 impact of extraction, manufacturing and transport. "When this is done the true CO2 associated with a conventional car is greater than the published "tailpipe" figure," he added.

He continued: "A car with a conventional engine puffs out a number of other gasses and particles into the air we breathe, which have a more direct impact on health than CO2. Electric cars do not emit any of these and therefore air quality is less affected.

"The CO2 produced to power an EV is restricted to the power plant alone. The UK Government is investing heavily in reducing electricity production from fossil fuels to renewable energy and nuclear power. Therefore in time, electricity production will become greener and thus the 'well to wheel' CO2 emissions will improve."

Oliphant concluded: "If your daily journey can be met by the range of an electric car, you will not only be helping the planet and your local air quality but you will no longer need to queue at a fuel station or pay the ever-increasing fuel prices, which show no signs of reducing!"

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