“Other than an electric car, that’s not how pollution is fought”

“Other than an electric car, that’s not how pollution is fought”
“Other than an electric car, that’s not how pollution is fought”

Refueling – with petrol or diesel – could be just a memory within 14 years. In fact, 2035 is the date to which Europe is looking to ban traditional cars in favor of exclusively electric mobility. Too bad that to date, in the Vicenza area, only 918 of the 585,125 cars in circulation are “current” ones. the ecological transition Roberto Cingolani, worried about the socio-economic repercussions of such a short-term stop. Fears also shared by president of the Automobile Club of Vicenza Luigi Battistolli, which rejects the EU project without reserve: “It is a completely unattainable purpose”.

Enough combustion engines from 2035, if the Commission’s line behind the “climate package” is passed. What do you think?
Easier said that done. Let’s be clear: the reduction of pollution is an urgent need but the way to get there must be practicable. The electric motor implies not only an industrial system that allows its production, but also an adequate production capacity of electricity and finally a capillary distribution network.

What are the risks?
The automotive sector, including components, represents 5.6% of our GDP with 93 billion in turnover and 250,000 employees. Faced with these numbers, an adequate screening of all the faces of the prism is needed: currently electricity, the one that would be used for cars, is produced by coal-fired power plants or natural gas or purchased from abroad, which also produces it with nuclear power plants. Mr. Toyoda, president of the almost homonymous car manufacturer, pioneer of the hybrid, noted that for Japan the switch to pure electric does not help the problems of pollution. They are factual.

What is the unknown related to the electric?
Lithium and cobalt are essential for the manufacture of batteries. China is already the queen of this market; at this rate, our car industry could yield to the Asian giants with a foreseeable default also in terms of employment. Nor should the problem of disposal or recycling of batteries be forgotten; there are gray areas that need to be clarified since everything is motivated with ecological purposes. Moreover, the production costs of the electric car are prohibitive for the pockets of many Italians. And this could limit their mobility.

In this regard, how many electric and hybrid cars are there in the Vicenza area? How many petrol or diesel?
As of December 31, 2020, the Vicenza fleet numbered 585,125 cars, excluding commercial vehicles. Of these 251,708 petrol engines; 268,296 with diesel fuel; 1,598 hybrid-petrol; 1,105 hybrid diesel; finally 918 exclusively electric. The number of the latter does not seem to be consistent even in light of the tax benefits enjoyed by electric and hybrid (five-year tax exemption for electric; three-year for hybrid). However, our percentage is in line with the neighboring provinces and above the national average.

How many charging points are there in Vicenza?
There are currently about a hundred columns scattered throughout the province. It is only those of the municipalities that have a specific power of intervention in relation to the programming, location and installation of the columns, a precise census is complex. And then in addition to the distribution network, we should also deal with the issue of recharging times and the autonomy of electric motors.

How old are the vehicles from Vicenza?
54% of the car fleet in our area is over 10 years old, so it is old. Only 162,942 (of the total 585,125) are Euro 6 cars, therefore reasonably exempt from hypothetical circulation limits. Before the electric one, a radical rejuvenation of the current car fleet has to be proposed with an incentive to replace not only with the new one but also with the latest generation used car. Many experts argue that the pollution of an electric car, in its entire life cycle, is equivalent to that of a Euro 6.

In short, are the times for the “electric revolution” not ripe yet?
I would like to highlight two aspects. At present, if instead of just 1000 electric cars in the Vicenza area, we had 10,000, what impact would the use of the energy required for their circulation have on the industrial, family and social life plan? Second aspect: the automobile cannot be the origin of all evil; it is a tool first of all for work and social life. Better to think of more concrete solutions, such as improving public transport.

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