The recent crisis in global economies has made several industries revise their production plans. For the advocates of environmentalism, this depression has brought good news as the European Union (EU) has pressed on auto-makers to produce eco-friendly (green) cars. The EU policy of replacing traditional cars with energy-efficient green cars primarily aims at cutting the vehicular emissions of greenhouse gases, particularly carbon dioxide, by as much a one-fifth of the existing amount of emission, by the year 2012. The production of green cars will also help sustain the auto industry without losing business.
The sharp fall in the purchase of cars has not only affected the European auto industry but also the car-manufacturers in the United States where lawmakers are asking auto-manufacturers to raise the mileage of an average car from 35 miles per gallon of fuel to 50 miles per gallon. Given the fact that vehicular emissions are the second major source of greenhouse gases in America, the US government is keen on replacing gasoline cars with electric cars.
Electric cars stand as the prime candidate for green cars. An electric car runs by means of a rechargeable battery. Instead of a gasoline engine, electric cars carry an electric motor that is powered by the controller, which in turn gets electric power from the batteries. Electric cars, especially the hybrid electric cars (carrying both an electric motor and another type of fuel engine), are more energy-efficient and their vehicular emissions are minimal. Thus, electric cars are also health-friendly in that they would prevent the formation of smog that causes lung diseases and premature deaths in a large number of patients.
At the moment, the main problem with mass-producing eco-friendly electric cars is their high cost. Currently, Tesla is the top auto company for producing eclectic cars and it has only produced some 80 cars, so far, each of which costs over a hundred grand. The US government plans to donate $400 million to Tesla out of the tax money received from people. Since the electric cars produced with these funds will be unaffordable to the average American citizen, the issue involves ethical concerns. Now, Tesla is working on a more affordable green car, costing around 60 grand, though there is still a lot to do before making green cars a reality for the mainstream.