School pupils impress in debate over green transport
BRIGHT young minds went head-to-head in a debate over the future of electric transport.
Dean Close pupils took on a team from Pate's Grammar School in the event which took place as part of Cheltenham's Sustainable MotoExpo. They argued for and against the motion: This house believes that electric vehicles are the future of transport.
The case in favour was led by Morgan Jones, from Pate's.
The 17-year-old said: "Even according to the most conservative predictions we will reach peak oil in 50 years if we continue our current rate of consumption.
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"Electric vehicles are the future."
Her argument was seconded by Andrew Tyler, 17.
He said: "After 100 years of development diesel cars are near the end of their development curve while electric cars are at the beginning.
"They will become more affordable and, as technology improves, will be available to most people."
Their case was rebuffed by speakers from Dean Close, who claimed there was still mileage in diesel engines.
Matt Neubauer, 16, said: "To invest in an electric car would be stupid, bordering on the insane.
"The fact of the matter is we can find and produce new oil reserves as fast as we can use it up.
"The economic pressure that will be added by switching to an electric system would be huge."
Charlie Carden, 16, seconding the argument, said the demand for electric cars was simply not there.
"Electric cars have been around as long as diesel cars and people just don't want them," he said.
Participants also answered questions from the audience.
The debate was narrowly won by the Dean Close team.
Richard Levinge, of Rickerby's solicitors, which sponsored the event, said: "I was mightily impressed with the arguments on both sides. This is an important issue which the next generation of engineers will have to grapple with in future, so it is reassuring they are already so well-informed."