One idea frequently cited as a way of reducing pollution is the use of scrappage schemes and low-emission zones to persuade people to replace their old cars with newer, 'more efficient' ones. IMHO this is a very bad idea, for several reasons:
We've just had the 'Dieselgate' scandal following the last attempt, where the supposedly more efficient Diesels were found to be cheating the system. How do we know that EVs won't have a similar problem, e.g. when it comes to recycling the batteries?
Such schemes only benefit those who can afford to buy a new car already - those who can't are penalised by either having to get into massive debt to pay for the bulk of the cost, or by losing the natural supply of older second-hand cars they rely on. This is even more of a problem if the scheme is accompanied by low-emission zones or other regulatory sticks.
EVs still produce just as much particulate matter from their tyres and bakes (in fact slightly more, as they are heavier). Getting rid of tailpipe emissions won't help with that.
I believe that it is much better to solve the problem by reducing the amount that people need to use their cars - for example by:
- Promoting flexible & remote working so that people don't need to commute as much
- improving public transport & walking/cycling infrastructure
- enabling people to live closer to their work (e.g. by encouraging companies to open offices in suburbs/provincial towns instead of always in the city centre)
- eliminating the 'school run' by making it easier/safer for people to walk their children to school. This also helps reduce childhood obesity.
The question is - am I right with this belief, and how can I persuade people to look at these concepts instead of the 'knee-jerk' banning/restriction approach