Climate agenda revives interest in electric cars

As it reels from its deepest crisis ever, the car industry is seeking relief in a technology that might just give it a new lease of life. Sonja van Renssen reports

Electric cars are trendy once more. The technology behind them dates back to 1828; by 1899 organised charging and battery swapping was under way in the US. But they never made it to the mass market.

Today the technology is back on the agenda, in Europe and elsewhere, because of relentlessly rising greenhouse gas emissions that threaten dangerous climate change. Transport is a major culprit (see figure 1). 22345:FIG1 ELECTRIC CARSIronically, the fossil fuels that dealt a death blow to the electric car in the late 1940s are now paving the way for its revival.

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