Question:Why does everyone still recommend electric vehicles?

by gauravsingh2699 | March 22, 2021 14:27 | #25999

The world is moving towards electric vehicles to stop air pollution even though electricity which runs these vehicles is produced using coal primarily, which is a major source of pollution.


Double check me. But, electric vehicles are more efficient than gas vehicles, even when electric plant efficiency is factored in.

There are a number of other factors. Electric plants have a peak efficiency. Unless the motors run at that speed all the time, the plant won't always be at peak efficiency. That usually means nights are less efficient energy times than days. Charging batteries in the evening would be a way to level out the demand and the efficiency.

Then there is solar energy. It doesn't take coal. If that is used, you bypass the coal problem entirely.

Alternate energy is not my strongest area. This is from a class more years ago th a I like to admit. Hopefully, it is still true.

Yeah, you are correct. Irrespective of that, we can say electric vehicles only have a slight advantage over gas vehicles. Any reduction in emissions from the likes of electric vehicles will be offset by the increased use of power plants to charge them. Talking about solar energy, a very less percentage of the world uses solar energy and I don't think we can use solar energy to run our vehicles as of now because the energy produced by solar energy is very less. We can only charge our mobile phones using solar energy, not our cars as of current standards.

I found this podcast to be helpful to give more systemic context to the clean energy/electric vehicles campaigns that I hear in the US

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This article gives a good overview of the carbon footprint of electric vs gasoline/oil cars.

The upshot is that electric vehicles have a lower carbon footprint than gasoline/oil vehicles, though how much lower depends on the power mix in your location.

Over time, power generation has been getting cleaner, and will continue to get cleaner as solar, wind and batteries become cheaper and older power plants are retired.

One more thing to consider: electric vehicles don't emit any pollution at the point of use (ignoring tire and road wear). So cities will get much cleaner as the mix of vehicles shift.

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