In London today it was said that in a little more than seven years hence, new cars sold will emit less CO2 than the cleanest high-speed electric trains.
This information was relayed by the head of the industry-government Automotive Council and chairman-designate of Network Rail, Richard Parry-Jones, at an intelligent transport conference.
Assuming average motor vehicle occupancy of 1.6 per car, and average CO2 emissions of 40g/km per vehicle by 2020 – which the auto industry is on target to deliver, he said – passenger vehicles will emit fewer greenhouse gasses per person carried than trains.
“That’s a remarkable development when you think that the typical average was 140g/km in 2000,” he said.
A former engineer for Ford, Parry-Jones also said he believes intelligent cars will communicate between themselves and with networked traffic management systems along roadways.
“Networked vehicles under digital control are going to become the future of car manufacturing,” he said.
This is not the first time we have seen brave new world forecasts with a sunny outlook, and it won’t be the last.
No doubt funding and politics present sizable hurdles preventing many more changes from happening quicker – and other random variables besides also stand to make the best of intended plans go awry. But to those who favor greenhouse gas reduction, it appears a green light is still more or less on for that one aspect of human civilization cleaning up its act.