The transport sector is responsible for a large proportion of global greenhouse gas emissions. It is essential that it be converted to renewable energy. For cars, the transition to mainly battery-electric vehicles has begun. But for trucks, the technology of choice is not yet clear. Because they are much heavier than cars, they will also need larger batteries. Right now, there is a race between battery electric trucks, hydrogen trucks, and overhead catenary trucks. Yes, you read that right: Trucks with a catenary, like an electric train! How do they work and what are their chances in this competition? Read on to find out more.
This week I want to share with you some news articles from this week that I found particularly noteworthy.
Last week I wrote about how owning a car can be the most efficient mobility solution for an individual.
In that article, I argued that because of this fact, cities that want to reduce traffic caused by cars should try to change the equation for individuals, so that other options like walking or public transportation appear more efficient than driving.
However, there is another side to my argument: While a car is usually the most efficient transportation solution for an individual, it may also be the most efficient solution for society. This is because car owners take care of most of their own needs – they buy the car, they maintain it, they drive it. Society only has to provide the road. What are the consequences of this observation?
Owning a car is still a dream for many people around the world. Increasing car ownership brings many problems to cities and their inhabitants – noise, pollution, congestion, accidents and more. Communities and governments around the world are trying to find solutions to reduce these negative effects by reducing the number of cars or getting rid of them altogether. However, this goal seems to be elusive – for example, carsharing schemes have increased traffic instead of reducing the total number of cars in a city. In this article, I point out the fundamental problem that I believe lies at the heart of the failure to get rid of cars.
A few years ago, a great idea made the rounds: The sharing economy. Why own something if you could share the ownership – and the costs – with others? The idea permeated the auto industry. Many even saw the end of traditional car ownership. Fast forward to 2023, and that vision has yet to manifest. Car sales are booming around the world. There seems to be no trend towards sharing your car with others. What happened to the great idea of carsharing?
Escalators – who would think of them as a means of public transportation? Usually they are the ones doing the work in the background, carrying us down to the subway or up to the airport terminal. But in Hong Kong, escalators are the stars: Enter the Central Mid-Levels Escalator.