So I’ll flip it around. Let’s just say for arguments sake that in 1920 something, a man called Charles F. Kettering
had been run over by a horse and didn’t invent the starter motor and the internal combustion engine didn’t catch on. (Most cars were electric powered in the early part of the 20th century.)
So now, I’m 35, live in a flat in a city, have an electric car parked over an induction charging plate set in the road. All the electricity in the country is from renewable sources and I’m not interested in cars.
Then I read an article about these new engines, petrol engines. They explode a highly flammable liquid in a cylinder which turns a crank which turns a flywheel which turns a complicated, heavy gearbox and clutch, which turns a drive shaft which turns the wheels. When I stop laughing, I read on.
The fuel I will need to make this machine operate has to be drilled out of the ground in Arabia and shipped to the UK in massive tankers. It then has to be refined in huge industrial plants that use copious amounts of electricity, it’s then shipped to a very expensive installation called a petrol station. I then have to stop, pump this dangerous liquid into the tank in my car. When the complicated engine is running, it not only makes a lot of noise, the gas that comes out of the exhaust pipe is poisonous, the engine creates huge amounts of waste heat which requires a massive, energy sapping cooling system, the fuel is very expensive and finite, it will run out. I throw my head back in hoots of laughter and put the kettle on. Ridiculous, it’ll never catch on.