SUVs: Dirtier Cars Since 2013

Oversized Vehicles: Our Planet in Jeopardy?

Climate activists have again engendered criticism of heavy cars due to a contemporary research investigation conducted by the Possible campaign group. According to this study, 2013’s combustion-powered cars will, on average, generate less carbon compared to those recently purchased. However, one wonders how the organization responsible for climate action managed to obtain such a determination.

Analysis from The Guardian has revealed that car owners in the wealthiest 20 percent of English households are 81 percent more likely to own a highly-polluting vehicle, in relation to the other 80 percent. On top of that, those same affluent individuals travel three times the total miles per annum as their poorer counterparts.

There’s nothing wrong with being a high earner, but car ownership data suggests that many SUV buyers are buying them “simply because of the image they bring rather than any practical need they may have for one.” This means that having an SUV is associated with living in a richer area, and as a result of their increased popularity, the average car has become heavier.

Past research has revealed that a massive 75% of fresh SUVs purchased in the UK have been recorded as owned by people living in urban centres, implying these cars were not necessarily obtained out of necessity. This is not something strange to the country as its inhabitants even have an expression to describe the glossy SUV’s that rarely leave smooth city roads: Certain London boroughs are mentioned in jest with the label ‘Chelsea Tractors’.

In short, the study states that there is currently a larger market for large SUVs than ever before. Due to the fact that these vehicles are far more massive than the sedans, hatchbacks, and wagons that buyers would have historically purchased, the average new car acquired in 2023 will produce higher emissions than what was typical in 2013.

Massive amounts of resources and care are needed to construct and preserve SUVs, rendering this utilization of them even more wasteful if the primary purpose is as simple as a journey to the tanning salon. People are snapping up the Land Rover Defender when, in reality, a VW Golf would be plenty for their needs and also be much more eco-friendly.

Electric cars may be seemingly emission-free, as they do not feature a tailpipe, however, they are highly energy-intensive and much heftier than traditional automobiles. As declared by Stellantis, these weighty vehicles make little sense given the efforts to strive for sustainability. Additionally, there are numerous consequences to consider: Parking garages have a greater chance of crumbling due to the immense size of modern vehicles that they were never created to support, and on the roads, the likelihood of injury or fatality is heightened, according to IIHS. As a result, the agency recommends less speed limits to counter the potential hazards of large vehicles.

Every year since the inception of the current-generation SUV, we’ve witnessed similar reports, and their forecasts are only becoming more despairing. Still, as people continue to draw a connection between size and prestige, air contamination will just increase further.

Do not trust our speech? In line with International Energy Agency’s statistics, this year, sport utility vehicles have been responsible for accumulated greenhouse gas emission that is equal to the sum of all United Kingdom and Germany’s emissions, both two being major production grounds in Europe.

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