Government bureaucrats are, on the whole and with a few exceptions, notoriously stupid. Bureaucrats in liberal/socialist countries are just plain stupid, one and all.
Take the announcements of late that the sale of internal combustion vehicles will be banned by as early as 2040.
Countries such as Great Britain and Norway have concluded that banning the sale of ICE cars will help reduce CO2 emissions and save the world from a 2 C rise in temperatures by 2100.
This is your typical bureaucratic approach. Let’s ban something.
Now, let’s show the dummies why this ban will have a negligible effect. It all has to do with scrappage.
Scrappage is the term the automotive industry uses to describe when consumers have given up on maintaining their vehicles and turn their rides into, well, scrap.
ICE vehicles are actually long lasting and have been getting more so in the past few decades.
In the 1970s. The scrappage rate in the United States was about 8 per cent. Today it is 4 per cent and declining. Globally, it is 3 per cent and declining as well.
What does that mean?
Well, for one thing it means that the cars that are built today will still be running 20 years down the road as it were.
Think about it. Globally, 70 million cars are produced and sold every year and that production is increasing by 5 per cent every year since 2010.
In other words, there will be billions of cars still on the road in 2050.
Of course, in 2040 drivers won’t have the option of buying ICE vehicles. But given the fact that the vast majority of drivers do not buy electric vehicles now, the chances are that EV sales will not jump that much.
In fact, I would suspect that prices of used ICE cars will jump as drivers sought to prolong the benefits of driving a useful vehicle.
And if used ICE car prices jump, the scrappage rate will decline to close to zero.
Governments, of course, could keep jacking up carbon taxes until gasoline and diesel prices made it absolutely prohibitive.
I guarantee you though that there is a very real limit as to how much taxpayers are willing to pay to “save” the planet. Any political party that pushed too hard is not long for this world.