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Old 26th December 2010, 14:30   #10
The Freak
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Australia
Posts: 9,400
All things being equal, a modern diesel should produce less harmful emissions overall per unit of power produced, compared to a petrol engine, provided both are properly tuned.

I think part of the reason certain technologies are ignored in some countries is because it's just too hard to market to them, especially if they've been tainted for some reason. Say diesel to a diesel to a lot of people and the first thing that pops into their mind is a truck with clouds of black smoke billowing out it's stacks. To them, it's old and dirty, and it would probably take a long time and more marketing dollars than it's worth to change their minds.

It's the same reason we're unlikely to ever see nuclear power used here in Australia. Too much FUD and not enough facts. So we'll just keep burning coal for most of our baseload power until someone comes along with something that doesn't conjure up images of nuclear explosions, meltdowns and the after effects of the Chernobyl disaster etc.

Hybrid's, in comparison, are a much easier sell, as they're a newer technology which has been marketed (very well) as being a "greener" way to power a car, regardless of whether or not it's the best method for the purpose at hand.

In some cases hybrids work really well. The Volt (although perhaps not a traditional hybrid by definition) is one example where it works brilliantly if you do mostly short trips with a lot of stop-start driving (which is typical for most people who live in a city). If you can plug it into the mains power between trips it's even better again.
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