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Switching to Electric Cars: Promoting Sustainable Living in the UK

29th February 2024 Print

Climate change has been an inevitability for decades now. Despite early knowledge that climate change was the result of greenhouse gases expelled largely by man-made sources or activities, nations continued to enable pollutive practices – to the point that we are on a knife’s edge as a planet.

Thankfully, technology has begun to catch up with the enormity of the challenge ahead. Renewable energy sources are becoming more popular and more effectively engineered, while consumer solutions continue to arrive on markets in all manner of industries. 

The biggest threat to tackling climate change is arguably the presence of fossil-fuelled cars on roads. In the last decade, the definitive alternative as at last appeared: the electric vehicle (EV). EVs are set to become the de facto mode of private transport in the UK, even if only for an upcoming government ban on the sale of new gas-guzzling vehicles. But what is it about EVs that will save our country, and the planet?

Reducing Carbon Footprint

As touched upon in the introduction, gas-guzzling vehicles are a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions nationally and internationally. Electric cars eschew the engine in favour of a motor, which generates no gaseous by-products whatsoever. The result is a direct reduction in individual carbon footprints when it comes to EV ownership. Collectively, we as a nation could prevent millions of tonnes of CO2 reaching the atmosphere. 

Improving Air Quality

There is an ancillary reason for which electric cars should become the new standard on UK roads, too: air pollution. CO2 is not the only by-product of burning petrol or diesel; engine exhausts can also kick out harmful particulates, which have been shown to seriously affect health in urban environments. A shocking study that revealed the impacts of air pollution in even unborn babies should show the extent to which pollutive city environments are a harm – and the potential of the EV as a saving grace.

Financial Incentives and Cost Savings

Even beyond the moral and ethical incentives behind switching to an electric vehicle, there are direct benefits which make EV ownership a simple decision. EVs are, in a word, cheaper than petrol- and diesel-run vehicles. For one, the electricity they use to run is cheaper per mile than any form of liquid fuel. For another, EVs are simpler in design than fossil-fuelled cars, making them cheaper to maintain – and giving them a longer life on the road too. Finally, there are government incentives designed to increase EV uptake, providing money towards charging ports, tax breaks for businesses and more.