Last week, I wrote about my experience stuck in a traffic jam on a winter day. While pollution due to emission from idling cars prevented me from opening window, high price of petrol pinched my pocket as engine was burning precious fuel while car was stuck in the jam.
Last week, I wrote about my experience of being stuck in a traffic jam. It was a winter day. Engine was idling to keep the heater on. Particulate matter pollution from other idling cars prevented me from lowering car window; at the same time an idling engine that burnt gasoline whole high price pinched my pocket.
Particulate matter emitted from fossil fuel powered motor vehicles contribute significantly towards environment pollution faced by our major cities. According to estimates, nearly thirty percent of air pollution in Delhi is caused by vehicular emission. Delhi government and central government have taken several steps to reduce vehicular emission:
- Creation of a fleet of public transport bus powered by CNG; Many taxis also run on CNG.
- Introduced Metro rail service, a nonpolluting mass transit system. Metro is increasing its reach, improving its frequency and increasing its carrying capacity. In terms of quality of service, Delhi Metro is as good as any public transport system anywhere in the world. Still many citizens take out their personal vehicles because of overcrowding in Metro coaches.
- Government has tried to reduce number of vehicles on the road by adopting ODD – EVEN policy. According to which, cars with licence plate ending with an odd number will ply on certain days of the week, and vice versa. Theoretically, the plan was good, and probably accrued long term benefit, but many complained that cab companies were charging excessively and citizens were buying more than one car; one with a number plate ending with odd number and vice versa.
- Delhi government is planning to introduce electric vehicles by 2023 and as per proposal nerly 25% all vehicles registered will be powered by electricity.
Inspite of all the measures taken, Delhi, and for that matter most major Indian cities, remain polluted. Even if Delhi government is successful in impelling its vision of registering as many of 25% of new electric powered vehicles by 2023, initial days are likely to be difficult for the following reasons :
- a. Lack of proper infrastructure to charge vehicles may lead to long queues;
- In charging stations there may not be enough power to charge vehicles rapidly, at least as fast as a petrol driven vehicle fills its tank.
- In initial days, charging stations may be located only in metro cities. For people venturing out, have to either use a petrol / diesel powered car or rent a cab.
- It may take time to set up charging stations as ubiquitous as gasoline filling stations along highways and in smaller towns.
I wish if I could invent a battery that people will carry with them on long drives. battery that can be replaced easily, charged rapidly and give better charge to mileage ratio. Government must encourage research and development on creation of such user friendly batteries and incentivise their manufacture.
Please read : Solution to Pollution : An Improved Battery
However, a wish is easier made on a blogpost than implemented on ground. My urge to government is that they should encourage use of hybrid vehicles to overcome pollution and meet the lack of infrastructure for charging electric vehicles. Hybrid automobiles are powered by electricity as well as by fossil fuel. In our congested cities, electric power may run the engine when the car is stuck in a traffic jam. On open highways, fossil fuel may power the engine. Use of fossil fuel may not be as much of a problem in smaller towns where vehicle density is comparatively lower and the extent of pollution is lower.
At the present time there are several hybrid cars available in Indian market. Cheapest of them is manufactured by Maruti Suzuki and the model is Ciaz. Cost of the car is around 10 – 13 lac rupees. When in a traffic jam and/or in a traffic light, engine of Ciaz can be shifted to battery power. Electric power of Ciaz cannot support air conditioning, a necessity in hot weather condition prevailing in many Indian cities.
There are several other hybrid cars also manufactured by well known companies and are available in India. Most of these cars are, however, highly expensive. For example, Toyota Camry at 37 lac, Toyota Prius at 45 Lac), Toyota Lexus at 1.2 crore, Honda Accord at 44 lac), BMW at 2.6 crore) are beyond the reach of average middle class buyers.
I would be open to buying a hybrid vehicle if the price comes down to 10 lac and below. For this to happen, government must encourage manufacturing and sale of hybrid vehicles in India. Give incentives to manufacturer, seller and buyer of cars. Only when customers find monetary benefit they may invest in such a hybrid car.
This post is written as part of WOW prompt ‘Write A Story or Poem Using The Words Could, Should & Would.‘ as part of blogadda. More posts related to the prompt may be found here.