Hybrid cars are efficient internal combustion engine (ICE) cars. They are electric vehicles to the extent they have batteries and an electric motor. But the truth is, 100% of the energy used by hybrid cars are from fossil fuels, unlike EVs which could offer a chance of using completely green electricity. Of course, you can argue that Plug-in Hybrids allows for that. So for a moment, I’m just going to declare I’m not talking about Plug-ins.
The thing about Hybrid is that they are probably great in terms of making the power generated by the ICE more efficient. Whether this is more efficient than the total process of generating the power from fossil fuels and then pushing the electrons down the power grid to the charging station to supply a pure battery EV, I’m not too sure. But the point is that you’re still using fossil fuels. On a per-unit traveled basis, your carbon footprint is lower. So yes, it reduces carbon emissions through its efficiency gains.
But then that’s what ultra-critical coal power technology does too. It makes coal fired power plants; and we stopped that. So when we think about phasing out ICE, it is important to make it more of a binary choice such that we are not leaving too much room for ICE cars in the form of hybrids. Accelerating decarbonisation is a significant priority and creating these wriggle room does not help.