E-Cars Dead At Birth? Singapore Says No To E-Cars As Asian Giants Increasingly Place Bets On Hydrogen Propulsion

Business soon could be getting awfully rough for electric car technology manufacturers.

For example, German online news weekly FOCUS here reports how the Singapore government “does not want electric cars” and even “is blocking electric cars”.

E-cars dirtier than claimed

According to Minister Masago Zulkifli bin Masagos Mohamad, who is responsible for the environment and water supply, Singapore has “no interest in a lifestyle, that is being promoted by Tesla’s Elon Musk.

“We are interested in clean solutions to get climate problems under control,” said Zukifli.

FOCUS adds that Musk’s e-car strategy has been “met with massive criticism” in Singapore.

In fact, the Singapore government also had previously decided to impose a CO2 tax on e-cars because the fossil fuels used for generating electricity for the e-car needs to be taken into account.

E-cars have environmental drawbacks

Singapore has strong arguments against more e-cars, FOCUS adds. One reason is that the country relies on a dense public transport network of bus and rail, and so throwing e-cars into the mix would only lead to congestion. The forward-looking Zukifli is clearly placing bets on hydrogen propulsion for the future.

This may explain why a number of countries (e.g. Germany) have been stalling when it comes to investments in electric car infrastructure. Why invest tens of billions in an electric car infrastructure when it may be obsolete in a decade or less?

According to FOCUS: “This [hydrogen propulsion] has a particularly low CO2 footprint, given that rare metals are required for the manufacture of electric car batteries and it has not yet been clarified how they can later be disposed of safely.”

Asia going full throttle to hydrogen

Reuters here reports that China, Japan and South Korea “have set ambitious targets to put millions of hydrogen-powered vehicles” – hydrogen fuel cell vehicles (FCVs) – on the road by the end of the next decade.

According to proponents, hydrogen FCVs are clean, the gas is plentiful in supply, offers distance ranges similar to gasoline cars and are free of battery-manufacture and after-life disposal/environmental issues.

According to Reuters: “Many backers in China and Japan see FCVs as complementing EVs rather than replacing them. In general, hydrogen is seen as the more efficient choice for heavier vehicles that drive longer distances, hence the current emphasis on city buses.”


Overview of hydrogen, and why it’s a threat to Tesla:

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