EYE-OPENING FACTS ABOUT
ELECTRIC VEHICLES YOU NEED TO KNOW
Electric vehicles (EVs) are less expensive to operate and own
than the now outmoded combustion engine cars. Electricity is cheaper
per mile than gasoline, and electric motors are way more efficient
at moving you down the road than combustion engines (a motor wastes
very little fuel energy as heat, an engine wastes a lot).
EVs are capable of being much safer than combustion cars... there's
no engine under the hood that can be pushed into the passenger
compartment in a crash, plus there's all the safety and anti-collision
technology that takes advantage of an EV's design.
EVs have far less moving parts than combustion cars, so less to
break and much less maintenance; change only tires and wiper blades,
no oil changes, belts, hoses, fuel and oil filters, spark plugs,
fuel injectors, timing chain, oxygen sensors, muffler, radiator
and transmission fluids, etc. Even brake pads and rotors last
a lot longer because electricity generated by the motor helps
to slow down the car.
EVs take 12 seconds to charge: 6 seconds to plug it in when you
get home, and 6 seconds to unplug it the following morning...
less time than a gas station visit. And if you can't charge at
home, there are more and more public charging stations popping
up every day.
Just as cell phones now have "Turbo Charge", the modern
lithium-ion batteries in EVs can be charged very fast at charging
stations equipped with fast chargers, and there are plenty of
them. And there are EVs designed from the ground up allowing for
large battery packs, so no "range anxiety" on long trips
(especially if your EV automaker provides a worldwide
is now commercially viable, thanks in large part to the kick in
the automotive industry's pants by Elon Musk and Tesla Motors.
Affordable mass market EVs require economies of scale, and this
requires adoption. So when there's a choice between a gas powered
car and an EV, and the prices are close, we as tenants of this
planet have an obligation to give serious consideration to the
environmentally friendlier, non-harmful option. And we get a vehicle
that can last a lot longer than a gasoline fueled car.
Oil is not
an unlimited resource, so we must transition to sustainable transportation
eventually. And because of the changes happening to our climate
and the ones that will happen in the near future, it's not a case
of "the sooner the better," it's more like "we
need to do this now to avoid irreversible catastrophic consequences
down the road." I'm
not trying to use scare tactics, I'm just dealing with reality.
And speaking of reality...
But aren't the emissions still mostly just moved from the road
to the coal-fired power plant when switching from a gasoline car
to an EV?
Let's say you charge your EV at home, and your home gets its power,
not from a nuclear or hydroelectric power plant, but from a coal-fired
plant. You aren't simply moving the creation of greenhouse gases
from the car to the power plant in a 1:1 manner. Here's why...
of economies of scale, one gigantic power plant serving 1000 electric
vehicles can be more efficient than 1000 separate power plants
(one in each gasoline powered car). Think about what it would
look like if you collected all the tailpipe emissions in a huge
bag from a gas fueled car driven 100 miles. Now imagine the additional
smoke stack emissions from a power plant that's charging an EV's
battery to replace the energy it just used for a similar 100 mile
drive. The difference is like night and day, for reasons #1 and
2. An average
gas powered car can get 24 MPG, but an EV can get three to four
times that in MPGe. So, much less fuel energy required for those
1000 electric cars than for 1000 gas powered cars driven the same
distances, resulting in much less emissions (greenhouse gases
and air pollutants).
3. The emissions
from a power plant can be "scrubbed" to reduce air pollutants
and CO2, but this is not feasible for a fossil fuel car.
refining plants require lots of electricity to turn crude oil
into gasoline. Since this energy production is unnecessary with
an EV infrastructure, this needs to figure into a "well-to-wheels"
analysis when considering emissions.
5. And remember,
coal-fired plants can have fields of solar panels added to them
to reduce the amount of coal they burn (already being done). And
in the future they can be replaced by renewable energy power plants.
So your electric car runs cleaner as infrastructure improvements
And if solar
panels and an energy storage system are added to a home or business
(already being done), an EV can be recharged from the sun, or
from other zero emission sources, resulting in a "Zero Zero
Emissions Vehicle". And how about that, Tesla has pioneered
"The data show that cars with internal
combustion engines were not clean in the past, are not clean
today, and will not be clean in the foreseeable future.
The auto industry will always find new ways to circumvent
tests and optimize results. The only way to ensure cars
are truly clean is to accelerate the shift to zero-emission
technology and electromobility."
Florent Grelier, Clean Vehicle Engineer,
Transport & Environment
Myth About EVs
some EVs charge from coal-fired power plants, they just
move the same amount of pollution and CO2 emissions from
the tailpipe to the smoke stack.
False, as mentioned above in the Q&A.
batteries will need replacing after 3-5 years.
False. If you buy a new EV today, odds are the battery pack
will last as long as you own the vehicle. Yes, as the pack
ages, it will lose a little capacity, which translates into
some lost range, but only a tiny amount. And the "healthier"
you charge the pack, the less capacity it will lose over
time, and Tesla EVs do this for you automatically. The other
EV makers? No.
everyone had EVs, we'd overload the energy grid.
False. As EVs increase, the energy needed to refine crude
oil into gasoline decreases, and our energy grid's capacity
increases thanks to the addition of solar arrays. Plus,
when charged at home overnight, EVs use the underutilized
capacity of energy generation plants.
no demand for EVs.
False. Yes, when people believe untrue things about EVs,
they are understandably not for them, but when they discover
the truth about EVs, and about how EVs are less expensive
to operate and maintain, and then they drive one, they are
won over easily.
and Negative Comments About EVs
there is a power outage, EVs can't recharge.
Yes, but gasoline pumps require electricity to pump, so
you can't "fill up" during a power outage. And
if your EV is charged, it can recharge your phones and run
some things in your home if it has a 120 volt outlet. And
it you have a generator at home, you can refuel you car.
Can't do that with a gasoline car. And gas stations often
run out of gas during natural disasters. Just say'n.
are demand limited, i.e., there is no demand for them other
than the early adopters who love new gadgets.
False. EVs are production limited. As fast as they are made,
they are bought... at least the better designed ones. When
people discover that a Tesla is way better than a Chevy
Bolt, Bolt sales go down, but not because there is no demand
for EVs. Tesla has more orders than it can fill. And as
more people discover the truth about EVs, demand will rise
even further (and so will production capacity).
are only for the affluent.
False. When you factor into the selling price of an EV the
total cost of ownership (operation and maintenance), an
EV is a better deal than a gasoline car.
no charging infrastructure for EVs.
False. There is plenty of public charging stations, and
Tesla has its own charging stations. And more are being
built all time to keep up with the growing demand for EVs.
And unlike a gasoline car, EVs can fill up at home.
are just glorified golf carts.
Have you driven in one?!! Anyone who has would never think
this. In fact, EVs have better technology and are more reliable
than gasoline cars.
EVs are silent, there will be more pedestrians hit by EVs.
First, this possibility is not a reason to not have EVs
on the roads. I was taught as a child to look both ways
before crossing a street. Do we as a society try to make
society as safe as possible? Sure! But replacing all gas
powered cars with EVs will make us safer (no street level
pollution which causes premature deaths, less negative climate
change impacts), even though there will be more pedestrian
deaths due to people not looking both ways before crossing
a street. And surely governements can air Public Service
Announcements alerting the public to the existance of these
silent cars, or they can enact regulations that all EVs
make some kind of noise at low speeds (already being done).
And most gasoline cars today are very quiet
at low speeds. So this fossil fuel industry talking point
is not appreciated by rational-thinking individuals.
manufacturing is less green than the manufacturing of Internal
Combustion Engine (ICE) vehicles.
False. When you take a cradle-to-grave look at the two,
you will find that EVs, on balance, are greener. And as
their source of energy gets greener (their recharging electricity),
the EV gets even greener (because of power utilities adding
renewable energy sources to their mix). And although some
EV makers have a manufacturing process that is less green
than ICE vehicle makers, some EV makers have a more
greener manufacturing process, like Tesla.
a question? Just ask!
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worldwide charging infrastructure mentioned above