Lowering emissions will change the way we all drive forever
It’s acknowledged as the silent killer, and linked – certainly in part – to many deaths in Ireland. We’ve all experienced it in one form or another, and, for now, we have to live with it. However, in the not too distant future, this will change.
Air pollution – and poor air quality – is said to be responsible for an estimated 1,700 premature deaths a year in Ireland, according to the 2017 Air Quality in Europe report. Many of the toxins we inhale are attributable to the exhaust fumes generated by petrol and diesel vehicles, especially in built up urban environments, and despite supposed improvements to how these fuels are manufactured over the years, the problem only seems to have gotten worse.
Lowering emissions has become a priority for us all, particularly when it comes to quality of life. Our environmental awareness has grown to the point where we as a nation can no longer ignore the problems around us – particularly on our streets. The ongoing investigation into the recent global vehicle emissions scandal has highlighted this, and subsequently contributed to a huge reduction in diesel vehicle sales, further fueling the need for action. Something needs to change, and soon.
And it will. In 2018, the Irish government announced its intention to ban the sale of all new petrol and diesel cars from 2030 – just twelve years away. And while some say this isn’t soon enough, it’s still a significant decision, one that follows in the footsteps of countries like the UK, France, Norway and India, all of whom have declared a similar intent. The same is true of China, who have announced their intention to follow suit, and Germany, hinting that they might too. This seismic shift in policy will affect all of us.
Electric is the alternative to petrol and diesel
Alternative energies, such as wind and solar, will continue to significantly contribute towards generating the essential electricity that EVs (electric cars) will run on. While it is estimated that there will be only 8,000 EVs on Ireland’s roads by 2020, the numbers are slowly growing. It is the Irish government’s stated aim to half a million electric cars on the road by 2030.
Improvements in technology, as well as efficiencies in manufacturing, have steadily reduced the cost of electric vehicles. This trend is set to continue, as more and more car makers introduce a larger and larger range of EVs. Ultimately, in the not too distant future, all Irish drivers will switch to electric vehicles.
Continental, one of the world’s leading automotive technology companies, is at the forefront of this technology. Better known by Irish drivers for their award winning premium tyres, such as the PremiumContact™ 6 and AllSeasonContact™, Continental are never the less renowned throughout the car industry for their highly regarded electronic and mechanical driving technology components, many of which can be found in any number of cars on Ireland’s roads today – including for EVs.
Continental continue to shape the future of motoring in Ireland
And it’s not just components. Continental are at the vanguard of the challenge to bring fully electric transport solutions to towns and cities throughout the world. As more and more cities impose limits on vehicle emissions within their boundaries – alas, Dublin aside – the need for alternative, sustainable transport solutions will continue to grow. This will affect how we all consume transport.
Continental have a diverse range of all-electric transport programmes in development, such as their innovative BEE concept. This foresees a future where we no longer need to even own our own vehicles. And Continental’s latest commitment to championing technologies that ultimately lead to lowering emissions and improved air quality is their becoming a Founding Partner of Extreme E, the new off-road electric racing series. Activities like this help to popularise the use of EVs, and will ultimately contribute to the wider take-up of electric cars.
And what of Continental’s tyres for electric vehicles? Their highly regarded Conti.eContact™ was the first ever dedicated tyre designed specifically for electric cars. Unveiled in 2012, the superb Conti.eContact™ not only harnesses and controls the additional torque available from electric engines, it also provides electric vehicle drivers with minimal rolling resistance (generating higher mileage), superior braking performance, and much lower noise emissions – essential for silent driving e-cars.
Advance Pitstop – Caring for your car from the tyres up