Thursday, March 26, 2009

Nano Hypocrisy - a WWI Analysis

Advertised as the "People's Car," the Tata Nano launched this week in Mumbai amid controversy. Many have decried the arrival of the world's cheapest car as an "eco-disaster," citing the hundreds of millions of potential new drivers that Tata's affordable price tag will generate and the resulting increase in carbon emissions. Meanwhile, proponents argue that the Nano has the potential to replace many of the dangerous scooters that now dominate India's roadways, which also produce a large share of the nation's transportation emissions.

Worldwatch Senior Researcher Michael Renner believes that criticism of the Nano's accessibility is nothing short of hypocrisy. "Two-thirds of all passenger and commercial motor vehicles in the world belong to Western countries and Japan, which account for only 15 percent of the world's population. Rather than criticize Indian consumers for pursuing more secure modes of transportation, we should focus on developing public transportation systems that are safe, reliable, and sustainable in both industrial and developing countries alike."

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