The World Economic Forum (WEF) is calling for the end of private car ownership in the name of saving the world from climate change by reducing the need for green tech resources.
“We need a clean energy revolution, and we need it now,” the WEF begins its article.
According to the WEF, critical metals, such as cobalt, lithium, and nickel — all of which are used in “clean energy technologies” — are in short supply. And while the WEF says recycling old tech that uses these metals could lessen the impact of shortages, it’s simply not enough.
“The complication is that we do not currently have enough metals in circulation, and even with recycling taken into consideration, mineral production is still forecasted to increase by nearly 500%. So how should we proceed?” the WEF asks.
Top of the list of solutions for how the WEF thinks we should proceed is to “Go from owning to using.”
“Be honest,” the WEF continues, “you likely have at least one old mobile phone tucked in the bottom of a drawer. Possibly an unused hard drive taking up space too. You aren’t alone. The average car or van in England is driven just 4% of the time… This is not at all resource efficient. More sharing can reduce ownership of idle equipment and thus material usage. Car sharing platforms such as Getaround and BlueSG have already seized that opportunity to offer vehicles where you pay per hour used.”
The WEF adds that people should not only give up their ownership of everything from cars to smartphones but that technologies and civilization need to be redesigned to facilitate this transition.
“To enable a broader transition from ownership to usership, the way we design things and systems need to change too… A design process that focuses on fulfilling the underlying need instead of designing for product purchasing is fundamental to this transition. This is the mindset needed to redesign cities to reduce private vehicles and other usages.”
Of course, transitioning from people owning things to essentially just renting them won’t be easy. The WEF acknowledges this but says it’s totally worth it. Just trust them.