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Hunting and Driving

Go back a hundred years. If you killed an elephant, nobody would have bothered with you. It was a legitimate practice, for sport or for survival. If you killed jumbo right now, you would not only face an icy, piss-covered floor but also be seen as some sort of antichrist.

Funny thing-or not, most of these self-righteous animal activists will go into those forests in oil burners day in day out. Actually, a big diesel 4x4 is close to law in these ‘adventures’ – which involve nyama choma. Ironically.

They will then put a horn in front of the car as a sign of solidarity with rhinos except now they have changed the safety design of the car. If you are hit by a car wearing one of those things, it will kill you from an impact that would’ve otherwise left you intact. They are ‘plenty’ solid.

100 years ago, the car was being celebrated, the Ford model T was the thing. Now? You have people who won’t give the internal combustion engine a chance to clean up its act. It has been doing well. Cars are now so much more efficient than 10 years ago.

The issue isn’t that I don’t want electric cars. It is an okay concept. It isn’t that I support hunting of any wildlife either. I can’t even slaughter a chicken; that has nothing to do with the fact that I’ll promptly enjoy a serving of wings. Killing of endangered wildlife should be frowned upon, it’s a pitiful and selfish act, but is using fossil fuel to power cars on the same level?

In an inevitable future, it will be anti-social to drive a petrol powered car. It will be so ugly, you’ll have to do it illegally and I wouldn’t rule out being shot on sight. You know, like poachers. Will the sourcing of lithium ion batteries end up causing more damage to the environment? Or is it Zimbabwe all over again, a case of wanting change irrespective of whether it’s better or worse.

I rather like ICEs. As a petrol head there really is nothing better, but part of me also wants to do what’s best for the world. Because it’s true what they say; we borrow the world from our children.

Rare earth materials have to be mined to make lithium ion batteries, which are the heart of EVs. ‘Rare’ being the operative term. It is not a clean business.

Electric cars are developing in leaps, that is a fact. Honda- which like most Japanese car makers had fixed their focus firmly on hydrogen power, is now back on track. It’s working on a 15-minute charging for its electric cars. Hard to believe but the theory checks out. Batteries are getting better and better, in five years, this seems like an achievable goal.

That said, an ideal energy source is one that can be used while at the same time allowing people to have cleaner air and water. The water in your house was purified and channeled using fossil fuel. The developed world has built itself from the ground up using coal and it’s the same facilitating the change to electric power. We are nowhere close in Africa; fossil fuel is still an integral part of our development.

Cars can be made cleaner with time; more money should go into anti-pollution technology. America has halved the damage in the last 50yrs thanks to its stringent measures.

If it’s about global warming, yes. It is a dangerous line to tread and yes, it will have its effects over time but there has been no rise in temperature in the last 10yrs. The industrial revolution was so bad, trees changed colour. We have come a long way.

Has fossil fuel caused extreme cold? Floods? Disease? Heat? Yes, on some of those but how will we dispose of millions of lithium ion batteries? What effects will they have? Is it something we have thought through? Is it something Africa has thought through?

The developing world needs affordable, accessible and fast fuel. Electricity is not it. Is it?

I want to hear your thoughts.