France Wants to Ban Gasoline and Diesel Vehicles by 2040

There’s still debate around how viable electric cars are on a mass scale, but France has put the writing on the wall for regular vehicles, who’s “fossil energies belong to the 19th and 20th centuries” according to a document published yesterday by Ecology Minister Nicolas Hulot.

While neither mine or Googles French is very good, the translation of the document acknowledges that so far Frances plans were not ambitious enough to meet their goals as part of the Paris Agreement.

The plan also reaches toward making energy creation itself cleaner by phasing out coal power.

This isn’t an entirely new idea, India has a similiar plan to phase out gas guzzling cars by 2030 while Norway, a country that is getting record number of electric car sales is aiming for petrol car sales to end by 2025. Germany on the other hand wants to just get a million electric cars on the roads by 2020. As of 2016 the number of electric cars in Germany was 25,154, so they have a way to go.

Swedish company Volvo earlier this week announced that every Volvo it launches from 2019 will have an electric motor. Volvo will introduce a portfolio of electrified cars across its model range, embracing fully electric cars, plug in hybrid cars and mild hybrid cars.

It will launch five fully electric cars between 2019 and 2021, three of which will be Volvo models and two of which will be high performance electrified cars from Polestar, Volvo Cars’ performance car arm.

France isn’t coming in with a strong plan though, just a promise. Greenpeace France has expressed its disappointment over such a lack of a clear vision. “We still do not know how we will achieve these objectives and respect these ambitious promises,” Cyrille Cormier of Greenpeace France said.

Petrol cars have always been a cheaper option than electrics or hybrids. For lower income families to afford to jump on the trend they’d require a government grant acknowledges Ecology Minister Nicolas Hulot. He didn’t give any solid numbers on how big this grant might be.

A goal is a good start though. I’m sorry petrol heads. The end might be coming sooner than you think.

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