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General Electric faces fines over French jobs pledge

General Electric faces fines over French jobs pledge

Business
France is threatening to take the unusual step of fining General Electric if it fails to create a set number of jobs in the country.It is claimed the US industrial giant will renege on a pledge to produce 1,000 new jobs by the end of the year.The Labour minister Muriel Penicaud said GE would face a €50,000 penalty for every job not created.The move could be a test of President Emmanuel Macron's bid to push through more business-friendly policies.GE had committed to create a net 1,000 new jobs by the end of this year when it bought the energy business of France's Alstom in 2014. The US company was in competition for Alstom with Siemens of Germany.But GE had created only 323 jobs by the end of April, the finance ministry said last week.GE chief executi...
Car dealer tactics stall electric car sales

Car dealer tactics stall electric car sales

Science
"Dismissive" car dealers are a major barrier to boosting sales of electric vehicles (EVs) according to a new study.Researchers, who posed as car shoppers in Scandinavia and Iceland found that sales personnel strongly pushed petrol and diesel powered cars. Around 77% of dealerships that sold EV brands didn't discuss their existence with the potential customers.Government signals are a key reason for these attitudes say the authors. In this study, the researchers visited 126 car dealerships across 15 cities in Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Iceland. The team also interviewed over 250 industry experts across the region. Of the 126 dealers visited, only 8.8% of the encounters that the shopper has left them preferring an EV opt...
Waymo to buy 20,000 Jaguar electric cars

Waymo to buy 20,000 Jaguar electric cars

Technology
Self-driving car company Waymo is to buy up to 20,000 Jaguar electric vehicles as part of its plans to launch a robotic ride-hailing service.The announcement by the business, which is owned by Google parent company Alphabet, expands on a fleet of self-driving cars it has been building with Fiat Chrysler since 2015.Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) will deliver the I-PACE models from 2020 to 2022, with the aim of providing up to one million rides per day.Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed but at a starting price of about $ 70,000 for the I-PACE, a fleet of 20,000 vehicles would be worth $ 1.4bn (£990m).Waymo has been working on self-driving cars since 2009 and currently tests its self-driving system on Chrysler Pacific minivans.It plans to launch a ride service in Phoenix, Arizona, in the
Electric vehicle use in Norway accelerating

Electric vehicle use in Norway accelerating

Business
March 22 (UPI) -- The number of electric vehicles registered by Norwegian drivers has increased by more than 40 percent from the previous year, the government said.Statistics Norway, the government's record-keeping agency, reported there were 142,490 total electric cars registered in the country at the beginning of the year, up more than 40 percent from one year ago. Passenger vehicles made up 97 percent of that total.Data for members of the European Union show the market share of hybrid and battery-powered electric vehicles make up about 1 percent of the total market, though trends are accelerating as consumer interest grows.The Norwegian government said electric vehicles make up about 5 percent of the passenger fleet, compared with 3.7 percent at the end of 2016."The increase seems set t...
Most new cars must be electric by 2030, ministers told

Most new cars must be electric by 2030, ministers told

Science
Media playback is unsupported on your deviceThree-fifths of new cars must be electric by 2030 to meet greenhouse gas targets, ministers have been warned.Homes also need to be built to a higher standard, the Committee on Climate Change - the official watchdog - says.The government says the UK is cutting emissions faster than any other G7 nation - and the committee agrees there has been a big shift under Theresa May.However, it says the UK will fall short of its ambitions unless ministers do more to turn pledges into reality.The warning comes less than a week after the prime minister launched a 25-year plan to protect the environment, including eradicating all avoidable plastic waste by 2042.The committee agrees the government's recently-published Clean Growth Plan is a big improvement, and ...