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Should We Ban Petrol and Diesel Cars?

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Should We Ban Petrol and Diesel Cars?
Photo credit: Mr.Overpants / Flickr

The idea that banning petrol and diesel cars would have some sort of beneficial effect on society has been floating around for years. While cars are inherently dangerous, their benefit to society—transportation of people, goods, and services—outweighs their dangers.

One major problem with banning cars in America is that the country is so large. An efficient public transportation system that meets the needs of everyone everywhere all the time would be an enormous project that would take years to implement.

A popular idea, especially in Europe, is banning cars from city centers. While this may seem sacrilegious in America, it is best to remember that most of Europe has an elaborate and effective public transportation system that can virtually replace the car in most instances.

Outside of major metropolitan areas, public transportation is abysmal in America. While in theory it would be nice to visit a thriving downtown scene without the hustle and bustle of cars, pollution, and noise, banning cars will have to have more than sufficient infrastructure to meet demand. Cars are so engrained in the American way of life because the country is so large, that any large-scale ban would be disastrous.

Banning just petrol and diesel cars would push more buyers to electric vehicles, though for many, electric vehicles cannot meet the demands and expectations of many customers today. People still need trucks to haul cargo and tow trailers. Until electric vehicles advance to a point where they can provide the same driving experience as petrol and diesel cars, any type of ban would be disadvantageous.

Saying that there should be a ban placed on petrol and diesel cars would not solve any problems. Consumers have to be in a financial situation to buy an electric vehicle, which are more expensive than a comparative petrol or diesel car. Forcing consumers to switch

before they are ready won’t help grow positive sentiments towards electric vehicles. In time, people will buy them as their performance, and efficiency increase, while their prices compete with petrol or diesel powered cars.

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