Many people in colder climates wonder about how an electric vehicle performs in winter, especially with the extra energy required to heat the vehicle as well as power through the snow and ice. Green Car Reports looked into this and has provided two articles on this topic:  Driving electric cars in winter: tips from experienced owner and Electric Cars In Winter: Six Steps To Maximize Driving Range. The answer. Electric cars in winter do have shorter mileage or kilometer range. On really cold days, the loss can be up to 40%, especially when running the heater. While there is no doubt the new vehicles are getting more range and will get better over time, electric car batteries are not as efficient when they are cold, just as gasoline cars use more fuel in cold weather—though it’s not nearly as pronounced an effect. So it behooves any prospective EV buyer in cold climates to learn how to maximize the range of their battery. These articles provide you with some tips so you don’t get stuck on the side of the road on a cold winter night.

If you are going to Bermuda and you want to rent a car, you might want to try out an electric Renault Twizy. (see photo above)

A growing number of states in the US are imposing new fees on electric vehicles as governments look for new ways to pay for infrastructure projects they say are long overdue. At least five states, including EV friendly California, passed bills targeting the cars this year, bringing the total number of states with fees on the books to 13. The charges generally range from $100 to $200 a year.  Many states initially encouraged drivers to make the switch to EVs through tax incentives and other measures. But now, cash-strapped states are asking the eco-friendly to pay up. Environmental advocates worry the fees could curtail electric vehicle sales. In addition to the fees, seven states that have eliminated rebates for purchasing an electric vehicle. Sales plummeted in Georgia after that state enacted new ownership fees and got rid of the incentives last year.

Last month, electric cars represented 42% of new vehicles registered in Norway. A major driver for electric vehicle sales in this Nordic country is the 25% VAT tax exemption, which enables it to have EV sales about 10 times higher than most other countries. Norway has a stated goal of all new car sales in the country being zero-emission vehicles starting in 2025.

Large European cities are banning or restricting diesel vehicles due to mounting alarm over toxic emissions, presenting a major challenge to European car makers. Among the cities considering or seeking a ban on diesel vehicles or an environmental tax are BMW AG’s hometown Munich, and Stuttgart, which hosts Daimler AG and Porsche SE. Stuttgart will begin next year to ban all but the most modern diesels, around 90% of them. Munich, which is considering a similar step, must present a plan by week’s end to drastically cut the city’s chronic pollution, in response to a court ruling. Paris, which prohibits any diesel vehicle made before 1997 from driving in the city, is now extending the ban to diesel vehicles made before 2001. That will affect nearly a fifth of the nation’s heavy goods vehicles and a smaller percentage of passenger vehicles. London has created an “ultralow emission zone” with a system of prohibitive road tolls to begin in 2019. Oslo, the Norwegian capital, enacted a diesel ban in January as winter smog smothered the city, fining violators nearly $180 a day. Mexico City, Paris, Athens, and Madrid say they will ban all diesel vehicles from their cities by 2025. Seoul. South Korea plans to ban diesel made before 2006 from driving in the city’s central districts. German car makers and unions are worried about the impact on their livelihoods. More than half the European sales of Germany’s top brands, including BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Audi and Porsche, have diesel engines. Diesel demand in Europe is projected to shrink to around 30% of the region’s auto sales by 2020 from around 50% today. See also The End of DieselGermany Moves to Crack Down on Diesel Vehicle Emissions and European Diesel Sales Fall As Buyers Fear Future Bans.

Oslo, Norway has stopped short of a car ban in its city centre but is taking measures that may amount to the same thing.  The city government has banned all 650 on-street parking spots.  In their place the city will  create “public spaces,”including playgrounds or cultural events, or benches or bike parking. Next year the city’s pedestrian network extended, several streets will be closed to traffic, shared space will be introduced, and 40 miles of bike lanes are to be built. If the removal of parking and the restrictions on driving through the city centre do not reduce the number of cars in the city, city council will consider a total car ban. The ban would include electric vehicles.

France announced it plans to ban the use of diesel and gasoline fuel by 2040. Currently, electric vehicles (hybrid and pure electric vehicles) accounting for just about 5% of all cars on the road in the country. The French government said it will provide financial assistance to lower income people to replace older diesel and gasoline models with cleaner fuels.

Construction is beginning on Vietnam’s first waste-to-energy project. To start operation next year, the facility in the city of Can Tho will use 400 tonnes per day of household waste and convert it into 7.5 megawatts of electricity for the grid over the next 20 years. Presently, Can Tho collects around 650 tonnes of household waste daily and puts into landfill or incinerated without generating any electricity.

Zion Market Research predicts the global the global waste-to-energy market was valued at approximately $24 billion in 2014 and is expected to reach approximately $36 billion by 2020, growing at a compound annual growth rate of around over 7.5% between 2015 and 2020. Waste to energy is a waste treatment process that generates energy in the form of electricity, heat or biofuels from both organic and inorganic wastes. Waste feedstock includes agricultural waste, municipal solid waste, as well as commercial and industrial waste. Thermal technology is anticipated to witness the fastest growth over the forecast period in Asian economies such as Japan and China. Europe dominated the global waste to energy market with a 45% share in total revenue generated in 2014. Europe was closely followed by Asia-Pacific. However, with increased advance technology penetration in Japan and China, Asia-Pacific is expected to witness robust growth during 2015 to 2020. Latin America, the Middle East and Africa are also expected to experience significant growth of their waste to energy market in the years to come.





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