Future of petrol after electric cars- Geopolitical changes it will result in.

Views: 1893

Essay Contest for UPSC Exam for IAS

Today, the popularity of electric cars, based on the myriad of benefits they
provide, seamlessly projects stiff competition for fuel-oriented vehicles. With
the burgeoning launch of various electric car models, the dream of a world
devoid of petrol cars no longer seems too far-fetched. According to a study
published in the journal “Nature Sustainability”- ‘In 2050, every second
car on the streets will be electric’.
Electric cars function by plugging into a charge point and receiving
electricity from the grid. They store electricity in rechargeable batteries
that power an electric motor, which turns the wheels. These
cars accelerate faster than vehicles with traditional fuel engines –
making them more convenient to drive. They’re emission-free and
environment-friendly. The advent of electric cars also anchors a
revolutionary change in paradigms of petrol usage in future.
According to an ‘All India Study’ conducted by M/s Nielsen (India) Pvt Ltd for
Petroleum Planning and Analysis Cell (PPAC) of Petroleum Ministry, in case of
petrol, 99.6% is consumed in the transport sector. Of this, majority
consumption of 61.42% is accounted for by two-Wheelers, while cars use
34.33%. Petrol is a non-renewable, exhaustible natural resource. Petrol cars
emit pollutants in the form of harmful smoke, that causes air pollution. It takes
millions of years for this oil to form, and when it is extracted and consumed,
there is no way for us to replace it.
India is the third-biggest oil importer after America and China and its oil
reserves mainly survive on imports. Favourable plans and policies have been
developed by the Indian government like National Electric Mobility Mission
Plan (NEMMP), and Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of (Hybrid)
and Electric Vehicles (FAME) scheme, to drive the transition towards
the EV ambition of India. Campaign- ‘Switch Delhi’ has been unleashed to

promote and incentivise electric vehicles in Delhi- one of the cities with the
worst air quality.
Crude oil is one of the most precious commodities of the contemporary world.
It is also rated as the most traded resource ever. Known as black gold for the
value it holds, crude oil is processed into petrol, diesel and a range of
petrochemicals with multiple uses, diving deep into daily life. According to
current estimates, 79.4% of the world's proven oil reserves are located in OPEC
Countries, with the bulk of OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Exporting
Countries) oil reserves in the Middle East, amounting to 64.5% of the OPEC
Race for export and production of oil in the Middle East, in the past, has been
one of the reasons leading to changing economic and geopolitical power
dynamics. Iran–Iraq War (1980–1988), Gulf War (1990–1991), Kuwaiti oil spills,
and Iraq War (2003–2011)- have all been fought with the rationale in tandem
with control of oil. The course of development and high GDP, drawn by high
returns from oil exports has made countries like- Saudi Arabia economically
powerful. Due to it providing higher financial contribution, Saudi Arabia leads
ahead of India in voting power in the World bank’s International Development
Council, which offers concessional loans and grants to the world's poorest
developing countries. If electric cars upset the demand for petrol, the economy
of middle east countries will hit a staggering limp. Additionally, the low
demand shall lower the cost of oil, which will not bode well for their economy.
The advent of electric cars will also pave the path for technology-rich,
innovation-marked countries like- China and Japan to dominate the
automobile-market on a very large scale. Being a nation of immense potential,
India shall also expect a surge in the upliftment of its contribution in the
manufacturing sector (electric cars).
With reduced usage of petrol in the transport sector, oil reserves of countries
like- America may get shifted for utilisation in other areas, like- agriculture and
The chief advantage of petrol cars is -they are generally cheaper to purchase
and maintain than electric or hybrid cars. They also are better when it comes
to speed. Electric cars require to be charged for a fairly long time, sometimes
overnight to get the power, one needs for a journey. In fact, most standard
electric cars only provide a range of 80 to 100 miles, before they need
recharging. Due to their lower costs, petrol cars have increased common
people’s access to a self-reliant mode of conveyance.

Overall, electric cars augment in the attainment of sustainability, and to an
extent, will reduce the impact of global warming, however, they require better
technical sophistication for expanding their market base.

-Namrata Sinha.

Related Essays

Top Civil Service Coaching Centers

Top Pages for UPSC Coaching