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Move to electric cars (and their Li-ion batteries) now seems unstoppable

ecar-chargingIn the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen (it borders Hong Kong) the city government has decreed that each new residential development must have battery-recharging units for every parking space. Otherwise, the developers will not be given permission to sell the apartments even though most of their new buyers will be driving gas-fuelled automobiles.

According to the Beijing-based Caixin news service the city government is concerned that lack of recharging facilities is holding back adoption of hybrid and electric cars. The city has only 81 fast-charging outlets, but only seven of those are for private car owners to use (the rest being for government vehicles). Slow charging outlets can involve up to a nine-hour recharging task. Hence Shenzhen (population 11 millions) has only 6,958 hybrid or electric vehicles on the road. The government expects that number to reach 25,000 by the end of next year assuming, presumably, that the recharging stations are available.

Elsewhere, though, clean energy vehicles seem to be on a roll. This will certainly be a relief to Elon Musk of Tesla with his plans to establish the first gigafactory, a huge battery-producing plant to supply 500,000 car batteries a year. The battle to get the nod for the location of this project is still raging as several states vie for Musk’s approval. Texas Governor Rick Perry has just been to Sacramento to pitch the case for his state. According to latest news reports, San Antonio and Reno are the favourites (with Arizona and New Mexico still not being ruled out).


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