20 March 2013

Somebody Please Tell Stubborn Fool Obama How Filthy and Toxic Electric Cars Really Are

When you buy a car, there are various ratings outfits in the business of calculating the true cost of owning that particular vehicle, inc. insurance, depreciation, maintenance, cost of repairs, etc. Such a comprehensive model is surely more realistic than just looking at the monthly payment or sticker price, and the customer knows if they're actually making a cost-effective, bottom-line decision.

But even if you buy-into the now imploding globaloney scam, wouldn't it make sense to apply similar logic to calculate the entire environmental impact of electric vs. internal combustion cars over the full service life... esp since the actual power for the electric car is not produced on-board the vehicle, and materials used in manufacture are quite different than a gas or diesel-engined car? Considering that the US taxpayer is being forced to pay for their development and hefty purchase incentives, you'd have thought somebody on Capitol Hill might have brought it up for discussion, no?

Typical green zealot Michael Bloomberg -who's mandated that iconic NY taxicabs be replaced by a hideous Nissan minivan with hard-points for a future change-over to electric propulsion- would be the case in point: I'm sure all the nice folks over in NJ will be thrilled to hear that Manhattan's smog problems will eventually be outsourced to their coal-fired powerplants along with mountains of poisonous used batteries close behind, on the way to NJ scrapyards.

Of course Obama's no better, as he's flushed million$ of tax dolllars down the toilet attempting to prop-up the unloved and ill-conceived Chevy Volt and it's bankrupt, Korean battery producer. But what is the actual damage done by all the toxic chemicals involved in electric car production/scrapping, and how much carbon do coal plants generate trying to power these things?
(data WSJ):
  • A 2012 comprehensive life-cycle analysis betrayed the fact that nearly 50% lifetime carbon-dioxide emissions from an electric car come from the energy used to produce the car, especially the battery. The mining of lithium, for instance, is a less than green activity...
  • By the time that an electric car rolls off the production line, it has already been responsible for 30,000 pounds of carbon-dioxide emission: in contrast, the manufacture of a gas-powered car accounts for < half of that (14,000 lbs).
  • For every mile driven, the average electric car indirectly emits about 6 oz of CO2. While this is better than a similar-size conventional car (12 oz/mile), keep in mind that just the production of the electric car has already resulted in 15 TONS of carbon emissions —the equivalent of
    80,000 miles of travel in the vehicle (!) 
  • Thus, if a typical electric car is driven 50,000 miles over its lifetime, the substantial initial emissions from its manufacture means the car will actually have put more carbon-dioxide in the atmosphere than a similar-size gasoline-powered car driven the same number of miles. 
  • Similarly, if the energy used to recharge the electric car comes mostly from coal-fired power plants, it will be responsible for the emission of almost 15 ounces of carbon-dioxide for every one of the 50,000 miles it is driven —3 oz more than a similar gas-powered car. 
  • Even if the electric car is driven for 90,000 miles and the owner stays away from coal-powered electricity, the car will cause just 24% less carbon-dioxide emission than its gas-powered cousin. This is a far cry from '“zero' emissions!
  • Over its entire lifetime, the electric car will be responsible for 8.7 tons of carbon dioxide less than the average conventional car, That might sound like a lot, but but it’s not: the current best estimate of the global warming damage of an extra ton of carbon-dioxide is about five bucks. This means an optimistic assessment of the avoided carbon-dioxide associated with an electric car will allow the owner to avoid cca $44 in climate damage.
    (in the EU, 
    credit for 8.7 tons of carbon-dioxide costs $48).
  • Alas, the U.S. federal government essentially subsidizes electric-car buyers with up to $7,500. In addition, more than $5.5 billion in federal grants and loans go directly to battery and electric-car manufacturers...
Government GET OUT of the automobile business, and let American car companies get back to serving the market! Nobody wants a plug-in p.o.s. but hard-core Obammunists anyway, and then only if you give them a big honkin' rebate...

Doug Ross   TobyToons   h/t Speedunque

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