Gareth from the Office: Not driving to Electric Avenue

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THE future is coming. Electric and hybrid cars are gently rolling out across the country, cutting emissions and silently filling our streets.

At the end of last week electric car charging points were unveiled in Milton Keynes and are the first of 50 charging points, 150 in total over the next three years, to be located in the city.

But to potentially gain the ire of green activists across the city I can’t see their appeal, at least not yet.

On the surface they are a wonderful idea, helping to cut carbon emissions and reducing the problems that we face regarding the rapidly depleting ozone layer. They are quiet, they drive well and they’re good for the environment. You’ll be wondering where I can find fault.

But with like most things everything has its negative points, and electric cars are no exception. Around 43 per cent of people across the country said they drive too far in a week to even consider an electric car with around 41 per cent saying that the charge time was too long and that it should take around two hours.

Currently, the charging time for a standard vehicle can be around eight hours and in January a BBC journalist, Brian Milligan, highlighted some of the problems with electric cars as he attempted to drive from London to Edinburgh.

A trip that took him four days and 46 hours worth of charging. All for a trip that could be done in a fraction of that in a regular one.

The streets of Milton Keynes seem perfect for the launch of an electric car and I can see why it was chosen to aid the launch of the concept.

If you are travelling across the city, carrying out short, sharp trips then an electric car may make more sense.

Yo can travel the city by day and charge your car by night, but would that not mean having a charging point or electrical plug-in station close to your home?

I’m sure all good ideas at some point were heralded as potential failures in their infancy but this one I can see struggling for a little while yet. For now hybrid cars may be the way to go as they combine the electric engine with the fuel version.

In the future I am all for electric cars. I have driven one in the city and they are easy to handle, quiet and good for the environment.

I welcome the idea of hybrids and 100 per cent electric cars but there has to be an easier way of getting from A to B without an eight hour gap. Maybe A could consider moving closer to B for the sake of the environment?

But at the moment I’ll stick to a bike or a brisk walk if I want to reduce my carbon footprint. At least I’ll get to Edinburgh quicker.