Help developing countries cope with junkers, clunkers, and jalopies in order to de carbonize transportation.

6 min readJul 11, 2022

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Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash

If you buy a car in the United States or Europe, you can realistically expect to keep it for approximately a decade on average. Many individuals in high-income nations would be ready to say goodbye to their aged automobiles and trade up for something newer, more technologically sophisticated, and, most likely, more efficient after 10 years or more of regular usage.

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But what happens to these automobiles once their original owners leave? To be sure, some are resold in the United States or scrapped for components and metal. However, for many of these vehicles, the adventure is only beginning. Millions of automobiles are exported each year from nations such as the United States, Japan, and Europe to low- and middle-income countries, where there is a growing need for cheap personal mobility. 23 million old light duty cars were shipped to low- and middle-income nations between 2015 and 2020. The majority of old automobiles transported from Europe to Africa are between the ages of 13 and 18. Nigeria is Africa’s second largest importer of old automobiles and the world’s fifth largest. The average age of light duty cars imported from Europe into the nation.

Photo by Marcin Jozwiak on Unsplash

What does this mean for the transportation industry, where there is a recent consensus on the urgent need to reduce carbon emissions? Many in the business are rightfully concerned with electric automobiles. However, as the lifespans of cars powered by internal combustion engines (ICE) are prolonged through international commerce, it is clear that…




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