Hello! Have you ever wanted to effortlessly discuss electric vehicles at a British pub or impressing your boss with your English fluency during an office debate about the future of green energy? Well now is your chance! Today's English lesson takes a look at how prepared is the UK to switch to all electric vehicles by 2030? We're breaking it down for you, so jump in learn English the enjoyable way! 🌱 #EVFuture2030 #SpeakEnglish
Why Adept English is a great choice for your Learning Journey:
- 🎧 Listen Up, Speak Up: We believe in a listen & learn approach. You absorb English the same way you soaked up your first language.
- 🚗 Real Topics, Real English: We delve into the hot topic of electric vehicles in the UK. Learn vocabulary and phrases you'll actually use.
- 🕵️♀️ Insights That Stick: Did you know the UK plans to ban petrol cars by 2030? We do more than teach; we keep you informed.
- 🤔 Critical Thinking: We don’t just talk. We challenge perceptions. Explore the hidden realities behind electric vehicles, like the ethical concerns about lithium mining.
The future is green energy, sustainability, renewable energy.
⭐ Arnold Schwarzenegger
Don't just learn English—experience it, debate it, and grasp it in a way textbooks can't deliver. Tune in, and we'll delve into the fast-changing world of electric vehicles. We're not only committed to making you fluent in English, we're here to make sure you stay ahead of the curve. From government plans to the gritty details of EV technology, we've got you covered.
But wait, there's more! Stick around until the end, and we'll unveil some eye-opening concerns about electric vehicles that could change the way you look at them. 🌍 EVs are green, but what’s the cost? Our new #EnglishLesson tackles the ethical questions. Improve your English and your knowledge! So, if you want to speak English fluently and also become an informed citizen, hit play now. You can't afford to miss this!
Electricity is really just organized lightning.
⭐ George Carlin, American Comedian
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Welcome to Adept English, where you not only learn the English language but also get insights into real-world topics. Today, we're steering you through the UK's electric vehicle (EV) revolution. Set for 2030, the UK plans to stop using petrol and diesel cars. But what does this mean for you? Tune in to find out and get ahead in both your English skills and your knowledge of tomorrow's world!
I think the environment should be put in the category of our national security.
⭐ Robert Redford, American Actor
- Introduction of relevant and current topic (Electric Vehicles in the UK): Engages learners and makes English applicable.
- Repetition of the phrase "electric vehicles": Reinforces vocabulary and topic familiarity.
- Slow breakdown of terms like 'target', 'range', 'commercially viable': Vocabulary expansion and context understanding.
- Mention of real-world companies and places (Stellantis, BMW, Oxfordshire): Grounds lesson in reality, useful for business English.
- Statistical data (one public charger for 36 EVs, £7,695 for Citroen Ami): Good for practising numbers and critical thinking.
- Use of transitional phrases like "But guess what?" and "Let's tackle": Aids in understanding discourse markers.
- Coverage of varied opinions and concerns on EVs: Encourages critical thinking and discussion.
- Exploration of words in different contexts ('charge' in battery, 'charge' at charging stations): Enhances understanding of word usage.
- Presentation of environmental and ethical concerns: Raises awareness and broadens vocabulary related to social issues.
- Spelling out acronyms and complex words (T A R G E T, C O B A L T): Assists in word recognition and spelling.
- Real-world issues like child labour, water supply, battery fires: Provides diverse contexts to apply language skills.
- British cultural references (MOT, UK's National Grid, locations like Ellesmere Port): Immerses learner in British culture.
- Inclusion of humour and personal anecdotes: Makes learning engaging and relatable.
- Mention of different currency (£): Useful for international students or travellers.
- Reiteration of key points: Helps in retention and comprehension.
Why Choose Adept English?
- Real-world Learning: Learn English while exploring current issues like electric cars.
- Rich Vocabulary: Learn key terms in simple language, such as 'target' and 'electric vehicle.'
- Cultural Exposure: Get to know British culture and accents as you listen.
- Contextual Understanding: Understand not just words, but also ideas, debates, and facts.
- Build Your Vocabulary: Learn and remember new words like 'range' and 'lithium.'
- Master British Accent: The more you listen, the easier it gets!
- Stay Culturally Informed: Dive deep into British culture and current events.
- Keep Engaged: Exciting and current topics keep you interested.
- Train Your Ear: Keep listening and replay challenging parts to improve.
- Stay Ahead: Be ready to talk about modern issues like electric cars.
- Be Informed: Understand electric cars and their impact in easy steps.
- Know Your Planet: Get simple explanations of complex environmental terms.
- Don’t Miss Out: Stay up-to-date and be ready to join in conversations.
- Apply What You Learn: Use your English skills in daily life.
I want to be as environmentally friendly as possible and leave as little a carbon footprint as I can.
⭐ Lea Michele
How prepared is the UK to switch to all electric vehicles by 2030? We're breaking it down for you, so jump in the conversation! 🌱 #EVFuture2030 #SpeakEnglish
- The UK aims to be fully electric by 2030, making this a hot topic!
- New terms and technologies are coming up. Stay ahead by learning now.
- Wireless Charging Roads: Imagine a road that charges your car as you drive. In Sweden, this is happening!
- Vehicle-To-Grid: Your car could power your home or even a whole city.
- Green Tyres: Michelin is making tyres that are 100% green, adding to the sustainability of electric cars.
Hit play now! With Adept English, you won't just learn English, you'll also become a well-informed citizen. Stay ahead in both your language skills and your knowledge of the fast-changing world of electric vehicles. Don't miss this chance; you can't afford to be left behind.
Imagine tuning into Adept English is like hopping into a futuristic electric car, ready to zoom through the picturesque British landscapes. But this isn't just any road trip; it's a journey to decode the future of electric vehicles in the UK by 2030. Fasten your seatbelts, as we're not merely cruising. We're examining every twist and turn, the bumps and roadblocks on the pathway to a greener tomorrow. The government has its sights set, but are we ignition-ready? With Adept English, you'll dissect the issues, consider the environmental toll, and glimpse the exciting strides in EV technology. Unravel the mystery, and find out what's charging around the next bend. Your road to mastering English has never been this electrifying!
- What is the primary goal of this Adept English transcript? The transcript aims to help you improve your British English fluency by discussing an intriguing topic: the future of electric vehicles in the UK by 2030. It explores the challenges and solutions tied to this transition, giving you real-world vocabulary and conversation topics.
- What language learning techniques does Adept English use? Adept English uses a listen & learn system. By listening to this transcript, you absorb not just vocabulary and grammar, but also intonation and pronunciation, naturally. The audio engages you with a topic relevant to British culture, which aids in immersion.
- How is the UK preparing for a transition to electric vehicles? The UK government has set a target: no new petrol or diesel cars by 2030. While this sounds ambitious, car manufacturers like BMW, Ford, and Nissan are ramping up their electric vehicle production. However, the UK still faces challenges like infrastructure and charging station availability. Mastering the language used to discuss these challenges can make you fluent in both English and in current events.
- What vocabulary/words will I learn from this transcript? Words like 'commercially viable', 'roadblocks', and 'infrastructure' appear in the transcript. However, these aren't just jargon. They are part of real-world discussions about sustainability and technology, topics you can now comfortably engage in, in English.
- How does this transcript address concerns around electric vehicles? The transcript delves deep into issues like the affordability of electric cars, the environmental cost of battery components like lithium and cobalt, and the safety risks like fires. Being informed about these issues not only makes you knowledgeable but also equips you to discuss complex subjects in English.
- Petrol: A liquid fuel used in cars. Also called 'gasoline' in American English.
- Particulates: Tiny solid or liquid particles in the air, often from pollution.
- Commercially Viable: A term meaning a project or business can make money.
- Affordability: How easily someone can buy something based on its cost.
- Range: How far something can go. For electric vehicles, it's how far you can travel on a single battery charge.
- Infrastructure: The basic physical systems needed for a country, like roads or electricity supplies.
- Conscience: Your inner sense of what is right or wrong.
- Toxic: Harmful or poisonous.
- Sustainable: Able to last or continue for a long time without harming the environment.
- Notoriously: Known for something negative.
Hi there. Can you believe that by 2030, if you want to buy a new vehicle in the UK, it won't be petrol or diesel. You'll have to buy an electric vehicle or EV. Imagine this future where petrol and diesel engines are no more.
Welcome to Adept English, where we're dedicated to helping you master the English language, but we cover interesting topics. Stick around to the end of this podcast to hear about some concerns on EVs that may change how you feel about them.
Hello, I’m Hilary, and you’re listening to Adept English. We will help you to speak English fluently. All you have to do is listen. So start listening now and find out how it works.
Electric vehicles is a topic I've covered before. Go back to podcast 275 on our website at adeptenglish.com to hear more. But that podcast was back in 2019. So let's see how the picture's changed since then. Where are we up to in 2023 with electric vehicles?
The UK is going full speed ahead to replace petrol and diesel cars with electric vehicles. It sounds great, but are we going to be ready by 2030?
So there's a government set target of 'no new petrol or diesel cars by 2030'. This is, of course, aimed at reducing carbon emissions, CO2 to be precise, because it's believed to contribute to global warming. It would also be great to get rid of particulates as they're damaging to our health and to our environment.
So there's much discussion about this target, T A R G E T, and it means 'a goal', 'an aim'. Much discussion about whether this target is actually going to be met. Is it practical? Currently only around 20 percent of new cars are electric vehicles. It is a start. And just this week, Stellantis, a brand new car factory at Ellesmere Port near Liverpool, began production, started making electric vehicles.
And it's not alone. BMW is planning to make more electric minis at its plant in Oxfordshire. Ford is preparing to make more EVs at its Halewood plant. And also Nissan in Sunderland are going to be making the Nissan Leaf. So it's great that manufacturers are stepping up their production and making more electric vehicles. Obviously it's in the interest of the manufacturers as they won't be able to sell new cars after 2030, if they don't make EVs! But all of these projects are currently receiving quite a lot of government money to get them to happen, taxpayers money. So the concern is, will the production of EVs be 'commercially viable'? That means 'able to make money for businesses' before 2030.
Let's tackle some of the roadblocks on the journey to a future of electric cars.
A photograph of an EV being made in the UK. Explore pressing issues like environmental concerns and ethical dilemmas tied to electric vehicle production.
Firstly, the cost. Electric vehicles used to be a luxury item that most people couldn't afford. £40,000 for a car? That's beyond what most people can pay. We can't have a situation where owning a car is the privilege of the well-off.
But guess what? Prices are dropping. Take the Citroen Ami. The price of this in the UK, £7,695, seems very reasonable. That was until I saw a photograph of this car. Did they really need to make it that ugly? Ugh, that's an ugly car! A better one perhaps, the MG. Their electric vehicle comes in around the £8,000 mark. So still quite pricey, but affordable as a new car. It's made in China. And at least that one looks like a normal car. So yes, progress is being made on how affordable these cars are, on 'affordability' in other words. That's good!
One of the other much discussed problems of electric vehicles is 'range'. That's R A N G E, and it means 'how far can the car go on a single charge?' With older models of EV, you'd be lucky to get 150 miles for a charge, but things are looking up. They're improving. Manufacturers are now saying that the latest EVs have a range of around 400 miles. That's quite acceptable. My measure is, can I get to my sister's house? Can I drive to my sister's house on one charge? That's 220 miles away. So that's my measure. So on range, things are also improving.
Let's talk about something close to my heart. My daughter owns a 15 year old Citroen C1. It's not a fancy car. It's very basic. But it has staying power. This C1 was registered in 2008, on the day that my son was born. And it still passes its MOT, [and is acceptable in London's ULEZ too!] Even though it's got high mileage. ' High mileage' means 'it's done a lot of miles'. It just keeps going. It's like a good old friend. Reliable and trustworthy. And there is something environmentally friendly about old cars. There's a massive overhead in the manufacture. Think of all the metal and plastic that goes into making a car. And then the energy used to recycle a car at the end of its life. Clearly, if you can keep the car running for 15 or 20 years, this overhead is reduced. Could an EV be your long-term companion in the same way? Well, the limiting factor here has been the battery, the life of the battery. The battery, B A T T E R Y, is the power cell. It's the same as the battery in your mobile phone or laptop. Just much bigger for a car.
If the battery life is limited, this used to limit the life of the car itself. And the batteries in EVs become less usable with time. They don't hold as much charge and they don't go as far.
However, manufacturers are now claiming that the batteries with newer technology do last a long time. For example, Nissan claims that the battery in the Nissan Leaf can last for up to 22 years! If that's correct, that would tick one of my boxes. I'd be very happy with that. I like to keep my cars for a long time. I like to know that they're going to last. So if that's right, 22 years would be fine for me.
Another of the big problems is charging stations, where you go to fill up with electricity. Although the numbers of charging stations are increasing, there are still nowhere near enough of them. If you have a driveway, then you could consider having a charge point installed on your drive so that you can charge your car overnight. But if you park on the street, then clearly that's not possible. And if you're out and about, you'll be looking for a charging station.
Apparently the UK has one public charger for every 36 electric vehicles on the road. But of course, there aren't that many electric vehicles on the road yet, and we're missing targets on the numbers that need to be installed so that we're ready for 2030.
The Guardian article, for which I've included the link, points out that there are 145 charging stations in London per 100,000 people. That doesn't sound too bad. But if you look at the same statistic for the north west of England - 33 charging stations per 100,000 people. That's just not enough! Can you imagine the stress of trying to find a charge point and your vehicle battery is running low? Or arriving at the charging point and finding there's a two hour queue to charge your vehicle? Agh, don't want that!
Also problematic, our supply of electricity in the UK comes from the National Grid. That's N A T I O N A L G R I D. If gradually all of our road transport comes to be electric and dependent upon electricity, that's going to create a huge demand, and it's a demand that we can't currently meet.
Will the infrastructure be there by 2030 to generate all that electricity? It's not clear how we're going to do that.
And surely the electricity must be cleanly produced? There's no point running electric vehicles off electricity that was generated in a coal-fired power station!
Now, I'm just going to mention two other big concerns that need to be addressed before everyone is using electric vehicles. These concerns are important ones. Many of the things I've listed concern the experience of the car driver and how usable the vehicles are.
But there are perhaps more pressing concerns than these. Electric cars currently have lithium batteries, that's L I T H I U M, and that is an element, it's Li on the periodic table, Lithium. More correctly, they're lithium-ion batteries, I O N. And the problems that come with lithium batteries are set to grow as EV ownership increases. Lithium is mined in countries like Argentina, Bolivia and Chile. And the process of mining is very damaging to the environment in those countries.
' To mine', M I N E, means 'to extract from the ground'. And the process is called 'mining', M I N I N G. So the process of lithium mining is damaging to the environment in a number of ways.
Partly, it's the huge amount of water used. 65% of the local water supply is needed to be pumped into the ground to mine the lithium.
This has an impact on local people and local farmers who then struggle to grow their crops. There's not enough water. There's also a risk that toxic chemicals like hydrochloric acid can leak from the mining process into the water supply. The water supply that people drink.
Local people in these countries in South America have quite understandably started to protest about this. I wonder whether the people owning EVs are aware of this environmental cost and this impact on people.
Also problematic are other components of the EV battery. One of them is cobalt. Again, another element on the periodic table, Co this time. Cobalt, C O B A L T has been found mainly in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Central Africa. According to an article, again in The Guardian, the UK newspaper, ' Lung disease and heart failure have been linked to high levels of cobalt, while the mines that produce it are blamed for devastated landscapes, water pollution, contaminated crops, and a loss of soil fertility.
Another of the problems is that child labour is used to extract the cobalt from the ground. 'Child labour' - that means 'children working under forced conditions', with toxic chemicals.
Child labour and unacceptable compromise to the environment are more likely to happen and to be tolerated in poor countries, in countries where there's not much money.
Surely this isn't something that electric vehicle owners want on their conscience?
We already have lithium batteries in our phones and laptops, of course, but clearly if we all move to electric vehicles, this problem is just going to get worse.
Apparently work is ongoing by some manufacturers to develop different types of battery, which use different components. Let's hope we can get to something more sustainable and stop doing damage to the regions of the world that I've mentioned. It's not fair for the developed world to be congratulating itself on its use of EVs, while people in Africa and South America suffer the consequences.
Another problem which has emerged in recent years concerns the safety of electric car batteries and the problem of fires.
Did you hear about the Fremantle Highway? This was a ferry, F E R R Y, a big boat, that was transporting nearly 4,000 cars from Germany to Egypt. It caught fire while at sea. The boat was carrying 3,783 new cars, 498 of which were electric vehicles. The fire is believed to have started in one of the EVs. And electric vehicle fires are notoriously difficult to put out. One person died and 22 crew members were rescued.
The Fremantle Highway is not the only incident of this type. In March 2022, a boat called Felicity Ace sank in the Atlantic near the Azores, after a vehicle fire, again believed to be started by an EV. This boat actually sank and again crew members had to be rescued. There are numerous accounts of electric vehicles seemingly spontaneously bursting into flames. The fire spreads quickly, perhaps even to other vehicles parked alongside, and it's very difficult to put out.
I can't imagine owning an EV and confidently parking it in my garage underneath the house, when there are bedrooms on top of the garage. This problem must be addressed before electric vehicles are more widely owned.
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The problem is reported by UK organisation CE Safety, who collect data on such matters. Apparently they happen in electric cars and in electric motor scooters, with even electric buses catching fire too. The biggest problem has been in London, where of course there is the greatest density of EVs. As of 2022, CE reported that there'd been 735 call outs due to EV fires across 29 fire and rescue services in Britain since 2017.
I've said before, I'm really clear - I'd love to own an electric car that was safe, practical, affordable, and truly environmentally friendly in all ways. I'd be really pleased with that! Let's hope that governments and manufacturers continue to improve EVs and that by 2030, we can actually get there.
Let us know what you think. We'd love to hear your opinion.
Enough for now. Have a lovely day. Speak to you again soon. Goodbye.
Thank you so much for listening. Please help me tell others about this podcast by reviewing or rating it. And, please share it on social media. You can find more listening lessons and a free English course at adeptenglish.com
- UK Government advisory on EV fire risks
- Podcast 275 - EV's in 2019
- Electric vehicle production begins
- BMW invests in Oxford plant
- Guardian view on electric vehicles
- Cheapest electric cars 2023: affordable EVs
- ‘Million-mile’ batteries are coming
- The spiralling environmental cost of our lithium battery
- Cobalt risks turning it from miracle metal to deadly chemical
- Data reveals extent of electric vehicle fires around the UK
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