Tesla car battery production releases as much CO2 as 8 years of gasoline driving

Ooops, looks like those “saving the planet” Tesla snobs just got their eco-ride de-pimped

Image from Tesla’s website

From NyTeknik: h/t to Don Shaw (translated)

Huge hopes have been tied to electric cars as the solution to automotive CO2 climate problem. But it turns out the the electric car batteries are eco-villains in the production process of creating them. Several tons of carbon dioxide has been emitted, even before the batteries leave the factory.

IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute was commissioned by the Swedish Transport Administration and the Swedish Energy Agency to investigate litium-ion batteries climate impact from a life cycle perspective. There are batteries designed for electric vehicles included in the study. The two authors Lisbeth Dahllöf and Mia Romare has done a meta-study that is reviewed and compiled existing studies.

The report shows that the battery manufacturing leads to high emissions. For every kilowatt hour of storage capacity in the battery generated emissions of 150 to 200 kilos of carbon dioxide already in the factory. The researchers did not study individual brand batteries, how these were produced, or the electricity mix they use. But if we understand the great importance of the battery here is an example: Two common electric cars on the market, the Nissan Leaf and the Tesla Model S, the batteries about 30 kWh and 100 kWh.

Even before buying the car emissions occurred, corresponding to approximately 5.3 tons and 17.5 tons of Carbon Dioxide. The numbers can be difficult to relate to. As a comparison, a trip for one person round trip from Stockholm to New York by air causes the release of more than 600 kilograms of carbon dioxide, according to the UN organization ICAO calculation.

Another conclusion of the study is that about half the emissions arising from the production of raw materials and half the production of the battery factory. The mining accounts for only a small proportion of between 10-20 percent.

The calculation is based on the assumption that the electricity mix used in the battery factory consists of more than half of the fossil fuels. In Sweden, the power production is mainly of fossil-nuclear and hydropower why lower emissions had been achieved.

The study also concluded that emissions grow almost linearly with the size of the battery, even if it is pinched by the data in that field. It means that a battery of the Tesla-size contributes more than three times as much emissions as the Nissan Leaf size. It is a result that surprised Mia Romare.

Full story

352 thoughts on “Tesla car battery production releases as much CO2 as 8 years of gasoline driving

  1. “It is a result that surprised Mia Romare.”
    It’s always amusing how these things we know to be true are such a surprise to those who don’t want them to be true.

    • Izzat picture really a Tesla model X. The front bulging nose looks more like the model S, that the model X cars I have seen.

      • Do you really think that producing the electricity charging the car has no carbon footprint? Subsidies may temporarily provide an artificial incentive to make it seem competitive in price, but if you’re depending on the subsidies, you’re a fool.
        At the unsubsidized ‘green’ price of about .50 per KW-hour, it will cost $50 to fill your 100 KWhr battery pack and from a 50A 220V circuit will take more than 9 hours which gets you about 200 miles if you have a light touch on the accelerator. My ‘gas guzzling’ SUV with nearly 300 HP, costs about $60 to fill the tank, can tow many thousands of pounds and after about 400 miles takes only about 5 minutes to refill.
        Do the math. Un-subsidized electricity here in California runs about 0.25 per KWhr and even this is barely cost competitive with gasoline. Fossil fuel electricity results in over a pound of CO2 per KWhr, so charging your battery produces over 100 pounds of CO2. Gas produces about 20 pounds of CO2 per gallon, so the 10 gallons to get you 200 miles at 20 MPG results in about 200 pounds of CO2 emissions. At 40 MPG, the CO2 footprints are the same!
        Is such a small reduction in your carbon footprint, which doesn’t even include the carbon footprint of the batteries themselves, cost effective? Does it even make sense from a ‘green’ biased perspective when everything is accounted for?
        Of course, a proper cost/benefit analysis is not a strong point of any left leaning ideologue and anything pushed by green interests is most assuredly bereft of any kind of proper cost/benefit analysis. To any green zealot, a zero benefit, infinite cost solution would be acceptable as long as they got to feel good about it, even it it means believing in a lie.

      • @John Williams. Good link/read (thanks). So maybe we take at face value the PopMech author’s assumption that it is really 2.4 years (note: his snarky attitude is a real turn-off, IMHO). Anyway, I guess the point of this WUWT article is that there lots of hidden (and certainly under-reported) costs to any technology. I look forward to a real apples-to-apples comparison; minus the booster-isms – if such a thing is really possible. For example, you would have to include the emissions cost of producing that big hunk of iron in an ICE, would you not? But clearly, Tesla has spouted some pretty bad – and provably false – information on occasion. Let the debates continue! 🙂

    • You should read (and possibly quote) that in context. He / She was commenting on the linear relationship between capacity and CO2 generation. It is not a priori obvous that that would be the case, given potential non linearities in production processes.

      • Russelimcmahon,
        The largest effect resulting in non linearity is running power plants inefficiently, for example, keeping them hot as spinning reserve to accommodate a cloud passing overhead or the wind shutting down. If anything, reliance on ‘renewables’ increases the CO2 emissions as a function of capacity. When plants are running at nameplate capacity, CO2 emissions per capacity is generally minimized.

  2. So if the battery last less than 8 years (which is likely) then the emissions impact is worse than using gasoline only? If so, why did it take so long for someone to do this simple research and calculation.
    Did the US EPA (and EU Bureaucracy) not really know it (or even think to check) when setting emissions standards?

    • As electric vehicles are virtue signalling exercises, not a real transportation option, the actual emissions do not matter.

      • But this explains why Elon Musk flounced away from attending the Big Tech Wonks’ confab with Trump yesterday; without his endless supply of pork gravy, these cars are a non-starter to anyone but the ritzy-toy crew.

      • I consider the CO2 calculation suspect. 150-200 kg of CO2 (supposedly to produce 1 KWH of battery capacity) is from 41-54.5 kg of carbon. The heat of combustion of just this amount of carbon, and not including that of any hydrogen in hydrocarbons, is 32.8 kJ/gram. That times 41-54.5 kg means 1.34 to 1.79 E9 joules, or about 370-500 KWH of energy. More than that if the energy source includes fossil fuels other than coal, or other than fossil fuels. I’m having a hard time believing it takes 500-plus KWH of energy to make a 1 KWH Li-ion battery, even if half the energy is converted to electricity with combined generation, transmission, distribution, and utilization efficiency (converted to low voltage DC) of only 25%. Can someone cite the report? Is it paywalled?

      • Donald L. Klipstein
        June 21, 2017 at 8:50 pm
        I consider the CO2 calculation suspect. 150-200 kg of CO2 (supposedly to produce 1 KWH of battery capacity) is from 41-54.5 kg of carbon. The heat of combustion of just this amount of carbon, and not including that of any hydrogen in hydrocarbons, is 32.8 kJ/gram. That times 41-54.5 kg means 1.34 to 1.79 E9 joules, or about 370-500 KWH of energy. More than that if the energy source includes fossil fuels other than coal, or other than fossil fuels. I’m having a hard time believing it takes 500-plus KWH of energy to make a 1 KWH Li-ion battery, even if half the energy is converted to electricity with combined generation, transmission, distribution, and utilization efficiency (converted to low voltage DC) of only 25%. Can someone cite the report? Is it paywalled?
        Donald! Thank god one person is calling out the bullshit math of this supposed study. Also trying to make it click bait against tesla. Interesting no one mentions that the two power plants near the Gigafactory are natural gas not coal. Also the anti Tesla people forget the plant to build the batteries had plans included in the design from before the first shovel of dirt was moved that once the factory is fully built it will run 100 percent off renewable power generation. http://www.engineering.com/ElectronicsDesign/ElectronicsDesignArticles/ArticleID/8436/Can-Tesla-Power-Its-Gigafactory-with-Renewables-Alone.aspx .So how does that math work when there no fantasy coal factory burning CO2 to make some skewed data to work for this hit piece.

      • “I’m having a hard time believing it takes 500-plus KWH of energy to make a 1 KWH Li-ion battery”
        Tesla powerpack weighs 1720 kg with 95 kWh capacity, or 18 kg/kWh. Typical hard rock lithium ore grade is 1%. You need to crush and transport 1.8 tonnes of hard rock to get 18 kg of lithium oxide, not yet lithium metal. The rock jaw crusher is 390 kW. The mine dump truck is 1865 kW. Are you going to power them with your solar panels Elon? Tesla Li-ion battery to power your Mars spaceship?

      • Tom Halla, Your comment hit the virtual nail on the head. You stripped everything away and got to the ‘bottom line.’ Period.

      • What Tesla press release did that come from?
        Firstly I would be very sceptical about anything from Tesla to do with time. They have missed every delivery date, in some cases by miles.
        Secondly, no Teslas have been around for as long as 10 years, let alone 19. So the best this can be is a model based on some lab testing, no doubt in ideal conditions.
        Thirdly, the batteries in a Tesla are similar to those in a laptop computer. How many of those last five years, let alone 19?

      • arthur4563

        The batteries in a Tesla have an expected lifespan of around 19 years, if memory serves.

        That is the expected, nameplate advertised lifetime.
        What is the actual lifetime – excluding fires that destroy the car and garage, of course? We don’t know. Call back in 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18 and 20 years to see IF the actual lifetime is anywhere close to 20 years.
        Oh wait. Average car “body and suspension” lifetime is … only 6-8 years. Rarely, cars will be used 8-12 years. Fewer than 5% will be used 20 years! And that 6-8 year car lifetime is for typical low and mid-income families stretching a car who DO NOT buy expensive high-end luxury cars to IMPRESS their friends and eco-peers that will be replaced in 3-4 years with the newest, latest and greatest (actually gets better electronic mileage to be useful!) Tesla model!
        To illustrate.
        Out of 1000 readers, how many are driving daily an 1997 vehicle? A 2007 vehicle? (My pickup is a 2006 model. It is not a “luxury item, and has seen much use, though only 78,000 miles now.)

      • @ RAC…last year my brother helped me out and bought me a used 1995/96 F150, Ford truck. It has 260,000+ miles on the odometer, and still functions nicely. One reason for that is the straight 6 hooked up to a 5 speed manual tranny. Then it was also a one owner vehicle, and well maintained. It is said that if you do not rev the motor over 3k rpm, then the motor is just about bulletproof. Ford trucks are impressive in their functionality.

      • @RAC –
        I kept my last car for 15 years, putting ~3 hours a workday on it on the freeways of the “greater” LA area. No “body and suspension” problems. I expect to keep the current car about that long as well.
        Do the scheduled maintenance and the cars last a good long time.

      • No Li-On battery in regular use lasts that long. Judging by how long the same sort of batteries last in power tools you are looking at no more than four years of regular deep discharging and fully re-charging. Bigger batteries might give you as much as six or seven years of service. The replacement batteries will be worth more than your car at that time.

      • I operate four vehicles (from newest to oldest):
        – 2005 Acura (120,000 miles – family transportation)
        – 2000 Honda 2000 (70,000 miles – toy)
        – 1992 Lexus LS 400 (250,000 miles, glider trailer tow car)
        – 1974 BMW 90/6 (O.K., this is my round the world bike, not for sale)
        I don’t think these ages are unusual.
        The average age of a licensed and insured vehicle in North America is more than 10 years. Which means the average life is 20 years (helped along by the 30s and 40s still chugging).
        This is important, not re Tesla, but re the turnover time for the fleet. Someone is driving a new car off the lot as I type, and the economics of that transaction are predicated on that average life of 20 years, as it cascades down from new to used to well loved to clunker. Try to replace all the vehicles on the road in less than 20 years, and the result would be a mammoth stranded asset.

      • RACookPE1978 June 20, 2017 at 11:21 am
        To illustrate.
        Out of 1000 readers, how many are driving daily an 1997 vehicle? A 2007 vehicle? (My pickup is a 2006 model. It is not a “luxury item, and has seen much use, though only 78,000 miles now.)
        I’m one in your thousand, I drive a 1996 VW Caravelle we bought it with the plan to keep it 20 years. We didn’t go for all the electric options as I can fix mechanical cheap but electrical is more expensive. Last year I did some major work following years of just regular servicing, a gearbox rebuild to sort 3rd gear (following clutch pedal snapping 5/6 years before) changed clutch at the same time though not overly worn and some cosmetic bodywork repairs total spend on parts was about £800.
        Mileage is now 167000 and good for a few more.
        James Bull

      • @RACook – ’02 Ford Windstar here. (Not what I would have picked, mind you, but this was an estate deal.) I expect to get about another 40K miles out of it, or five more years, with careful nursing…
        @Arthur – Tesla warranties their batteries for eight years, not even half of the so-called “expected lifespan.” I’m assuming that they have decent engineers and accountants; these people calculate the warranty period for a product based on the reality of when failures are going to start a steep climb.

        • “… I’m assuming that they have decent engineers and accountants; these people calculate the warranty period for a product based on the reality of when failures are going to start a steep climb….” Actually it was
          California law that dictated it because of all the doubt surrounding battery life. How you treat the battery determines its’ life. Fast charge and full charge reduces LIoN battery life. If you deplete the battery fully every day and fast charged it to maximum capacity it has been estimated it would lose minimum 5% capacity per year and how useful is a battery with only 1/2 capacity?

          • Not quite getting your point here – are you saying that California law required Tesla to reduce their warranty period? Or that it requires Tesla owners to fully deplete and fast charge?
            I doubt this, either way.
            But I do believe that the Tesla people, like all bean counters at manufacturing companies, did look at the usage patterns in real life, not the ideal usage pattern – and set their warranty period accordingly.

          • “…Not quite getting your point here – are you saying that California law required Tesla to reduce their warranty period? Or that it requires Tesla owners to fully deplete and fast charge?” Neither. The charging scenario was an example. CA law included propulsion batteries for hybrids and PEVs in the mandatory warranty period for pollution associated hardware…. I believe it’s 10 years 125K miles? I assume the Tesla cars are included in that law. My point is although the engineers are more than capable of determining warranty periods in California it is determined for you by law in some cases. You also need to understand their warranty claims to make any judgement on the value in your situation. Hence the example. If you plan on maxing the vehicle range every day of your commute and utilize a ‘fast’ charger you may not have enough range after 5 years to complete your commute and still be outside of warranty replacement because the warranty specifies charge capacity reduction determined by usage. Make any more sense? Not knocking EVs as I think they are ideal for congested high density living traffic.

          • Hmm. So Tesla apparently got an exemption to allow them to warranty for less than 10 years, as is mandated?
            I do need to acknowledge that there is no mileage limitation on the battery/drive train warranty, just the 8 year time limit. However, an interesting message from Elon when they changed their policy…

            To investors in Tesla, I must acknowledge that this will have a moderately negative effect on Tesla earnings in the short term, as our warranty reserves will necessarily have to increase above current levels.

      • “Out of 1000 readers, how many are driving daily an 1997 vehicle? A 2007 vehicle?”
        My current transport is a 2007 Saab 93 Diesel Estate, 128,000 miles and still counting.

      • @RAC, the average age of a car on the road in the U.S. is over 11 years, so it certainly isn’t rare for a car to last 8-12 years here.

      • I laugh heartily at the assertion that Tesla car batteries are designed to last 19 years. Especially laughing hard because I just suffered a battery failure yesterday with a Li-on emergency car jumper, which was bought less than 5 years ago and used for it’s intended purpose 3 or 4 times in those years. I went to recharge the unit and found that it will no longer take more than 10V, it is effectively useless after relatively light usage.

      • My “daily driver” up until 2 years ago was a 1994 Ford Taurus SHO. I loved that car and will buy it back from the guy I sold it to if he will let me upon my return to living in the USA. I just hated it being garaged and not used while I am in China.

      • I don’t care how long the lifespan is expected to be…a battery will never last 19 years.

    • Wait a minute. You have to assume that the production of a battery powered vehicle means the non-production of a fossil fuel powered vehicle. To be informative, this study should have compared the two processes for total CO2 emissions. Otherwise, it’s meaningless. A Ford F150 engine doesn’t just drop out of the sky. There is aluminum to be smelted, steel to be produced, etc.

      • No Trebla, you’re wrong here. A Tesla and a regular gasoline powered vehicle will have a similar amount of aluminum, steel, and rubber for about 90% of the vehicle. This study focused on the production of the battery, something the gas powered vehicle won’t have at all. So it’s a very informative study.

      • You should do a comparison of power trains to get an idea of the difference and assume all aspects of a car are equal.

      • Pete what he is saying is that this study didn’t say how much energy goes into making the gasoline engine and components unique to a gasoline powered car. How much energy went into making the gasoline engine? What were the resource requirements (and emissions) at the factory for the gasoline engine? they are notably absent here.

      • While comparing the power trains include the production of the electric motors, which rely on a lot of rare earth metals.

      • Dinsdale, you can build electric motors without rare-earth materials. Just have both field and armature made with copper wire.

      • “You have to assume that the production of a battery powered vehicle means the non-production of a fossil fuel powered vehicle.”
        Assume no such thing. Electric vehicles are supplemental vehicles for rich people, not primary vehicles.

      • Luis, it’s true that you can make electric motors without rare earth metals, but the motor will end being much heavier and much less efficient.

      • Pete,
        To be the Devil’s Advocate here, because the battery study took into account the CO2 released for mining, then similar calculations should be made for drilling and extraction of crude oil. For manufacturing of the battery, one should add the energy costs of refining crude oil. Lastly, there are the energy costs of distribution of the refined fuel (diesel and gasoline) for conventional ICE vehicles.

      • Trebla; that is not true. the Tesla has an electric motor, the Ford 150 a gas motor. The electric motor runs on the batteries, the F150 on gasoline. It is a fair comparison. The difference then is the consumption of each: the Tesla consuming electricity to charge the battery and gas for the F150.

      • And the Tesla must be recharged by plugging it into and electrical outlet that is powered by a coal or oil fueled power plant.

      • “And the Tesla must be recharged by plugging it into and electrical outlet that is powered by a coal or oil fueled power plant.
        It depends, of course, on how that electricity is generated. Very little oil is used. It’s natural gas, coal, nuclear or renewable, to name the top 4. https://www.eia.gov/tools/faqs/faq.php?id=427&t=3

      • But they’re not talking about the motor, or the fuel, or any other components that are “common” to both types of vehicles.
        The battery of an EV is simply the “fuel tank.” It’s a fair assumption that manufacturing impacts of the rest of the components of both types of vehicles will be similar.
        To be completely fair, one must compare the CO2 produced by manufacturing an EV “fuel tank” vs. the CO2 produced by manufacturing a conventional gas or diesel tank. I suspect that the latter amount will be much less.

      • Trebla: you hit it on the head. The latest information I found is that a ton of steel produced-creates 2 tons of CO2. The analogue to that battery is an engine, transmission, fuel tank, fuel lines, and lead-acid battery. (I am equating the electric motor in the Tesla with the starter motor and alternator, resource-wise)
        The study also assumes equal CO2 emissions across all battery factories; this is an unsound assumption, considering the orders of magnitude in difference between Nissan’s battery productions, and Tesla’s.
        -The bottom line is that YES… anybody who understands the basics of ANY industrial fabrication-understands that there is a carbon cost. No shocker there…
        -But the people inclined to use this as an argument against electric cars are using Underpants Gnomes logic:
        Step 1: Batteries create (potentially flawed, or unsubstantiated logic) number of CO2.

        Step 3: Gas cars create less CO2 than Tesla cars.

    • and if the electricity to charge the battery is generated by NGas or Oil, then it becomes quite funny, I mean burning oil in the car, has to be more efficient than burning it somewhere else, creating electricity and sending it to the battery charging location…

    • Maybe I missed it, but what seems to be missing is a comparison between the CO2 released to produce an ICE car and the CO2 released to produce an EV. A quick look suggests that the CO2 released is similar for both, not more for the EV. And if that’s true, then the EV would still release less CO2 overall.

      • You have missed the point entirely. This is not an ICE to EV comparison. It’s all about batteries. Put up your straw man elsewhere. The point is, before the battery gets into the car it has a carbon footprint of several tons of CO2. Add that to the CO2 generated to recharge the battery, and what is the pounds of CO2 per kilowatt-hour over the useful life of the battery? How may miles did that get you, and now what is the pounds of CO2 per mile and how does that compare on a fuel-only basis to a similar ICE vehicle?

      • Well that’s the point. It shouldn’t be just a battery comparison. It should be a total car/fuel use comparison.

      • I’m realllllly late to this discussion, but… Prager U put out a video about a year ago that does end-to-end comparisons. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=17xh_VRrnMU
        TL;DW —
        Manufacturing an EV including batteries – 25 tons CO2, Manufacturing an ICEV – 16 tons CO2
        The assumptions for the lifetime estimates below are for a 90,000 mile life (which seems quite low to me) and doesn’t include a battery pack replacement for the EV.
        Nissan Leaf estimated total lifetime emissions from manufacture, estimated charging emissions, and scrapping — 31 tonnes.
        Mercedes cdi A160 estimated total lifetime emissions including manufacture, diesel fuel, and scrapping — 34 tonnes.
        Tesla Model S estimated total emissions: 44 tonnes
        Audi A7 Quattro estimated total emissions: 49 tonnes
        Cost per tonne of carbon today = $12.91 (source)
        Meaning that the “lifetime pollution cost savings” of a Tesla over an Audi A7 Quattro is about $65.

    • Since the Tesla is running on electricity ONLY it is important to not that it is not a clean energy car. Beside the cost of a Tesla there is, I believe subsidized by us. And imagine just the cost of having the power stations installed in your house. My neighbors owns 2 Tesla’s and had 2 power ports installed in 2 different locations that are powered by solar panels.

    • No, if it lasts less than 8 years it will require more CO2 for a new battery. Not sure what car was chosen for 8 year equivalency, probably some sort of fleet average. To be fair, the CO2 footprint of mining oil is probably not built in to the 8 year “equivalent”.
      Few comprehend the enormous line loss through the grid when a remote power source is used to recharge an electric car. It averages 30%. A new Tesla where I live will often sport a temporary license claiming “zero emission”. I yearn for the opportunity to correct one with a sharpie to zero^ LOCAL emission.
      The electric motors are actually very efficient energy converters compared with crankshafts. They make up the 30% line loss and then some to beat out my 50mpg hybrid by about 10% in Carbon footprint.
      Durability is currently unknown, but potentially these electric motors could last a really long time.
      Bottom line: If you really want to kick ass, get enough solar panels to balance the recharge for your daily commute, thus eliminating the line loss. Don’t do it for the Carbon. Do it because it is efficient.

      • “…Durability is currently unknown, but potentially these electric motors could last a really long time….” The motors should be good with only one moving part but it’s the step down transmissions that become the weak spot due to all the ‘instant’ torque available.

      USA driving averages: 13,085miles/yr, 22.6 mpg, 19.6 lb CO2/gal = 5 tons CO2 per car per year. The article says 17.5 tons per battery pack so divid by 5 tons per year = 3.5years!
      Tesla batteries with 200,000 miles still perform at 92% capacity, so more than 15.4 years on a battery pack.
      Other factors ignored:
      1. Tesla recycles their batteries, recovering 70% of the carbon.
      2.The article assumes the majority of the battery plant’s electricity come from fossil fuel. Tesla owns the largest photovoltaic array in the world and therefore has electricity with less CO2 impact.
      Forbes article points out how much less CO2 in life of an EV vs an ICE vehicle.
      google: the-carbon-footprint-of-tesla-manufacturing
      My further math breakdown: http://www.facebook.com/WWTeslaX

  3. It will be crazy if this means the Tesla cars don’t succeed. I don’t give a FF for CO2 emissions but these battery cars would be a damn sight cheaper to run than a petrol motor.
    Just watch the oil companies try to destroy them. In fact, they may well be responsible for the article.

    • Badger: I somewhat agree. If the electric cars are competitive with gasoline, lets do it! But…factor in the government subsidies that taxpayers ultimately pick up as a cost of driving. Also, include the cost of battery replacement/disposal. If it all checks out, bravo!
      But I doubt that it will.

      • Oh and the other subsidies. Southern California Edison got permission from the California Public Utilities Commission to spread the cost of putting in >8K charging stations across all electricity users, not just the electric car users. Nice subsidy there.

    • Anything is possible, but you need evidence to justify such a proposition. Do you have any? I am sure the manufacturers are busy promoting EVs despite the questionable net benefit wrt CO2 generation.

    • “these battery cars would be a damn sight cheaper to run than a petrol motor”
      But only because there are fuels taxes on petrol that don’t apply to electricity.
      If electric cars were a significant %age of those sold then government tax revenues would go down and so some way of recouping that ‘lost’ revenue would be introduced.

      • They already have that covered. Place a GPS tracker in each car and send them a bill for the miles traveled each month. Government will not do with less money EVER!!!!

    • Exactly, because we all know electricity is cheaper than fossil fuels. That is why in cold climates everybody uses electric heaters rather than natural gas. Oh, wait.

      • That’s what I was thinking. How do you get more energy out of fossil fuels by using them to produce electricity? You lose energy in any conversion process. Are electric cars that much more efficient than gas-powered cars that they go a lot further on the same amount of energy?

      • I don’t think you can say a fuel is more or less efficient until you define the application. Heating with natural gas is probably relatively efficient because the whole point is to generate heat. With other processes, such as a gasoline engine, the point is to generate motion and heat generation is frequently an unwanted by-product. Those losses can be better controlled with large stationary generators that aren’t asked to operate at widely varying power outputs like a car. So their efficiency can be greater than that of a car engine. OTOH, you have transportation, storage and some heat loss with electric as well (and also some energy recovery if regenerative braking is used). So the reality is that it just isn’t as simple as saying one or the other is “cheaper” or more efficient. You have to look at the total picture.

      • No. They clearly have not “arrived” for long distance travel. But the Tesla quick charge stations certainly make Teslas less cumbersome for long distance travel than I had previously thought. Of course if you factor in their relatively high prices ….

    • “a damn sight cheaper to run than a petrol motor.” So long as it runs, is it also cheaper while it’s charging as you watch petrol motors drive on?

      • Is it cheaper to run? you have paid a lot more up front for the basic transport functionality. Seems to me your are just time shifting expense and bringing it forward with an EV. Pay more for the car and then convince yourself you are saving money driving it.

    • Badger, the only reason they are cheaper is because the purchase is directly subsidized, the research is directly subsidized etc. etc. and if you TAX the CHARGING just like petrol is taxed it’s no cheaper.
      The cheaper operation electric vehicle shtick is a fools mirage, just like the C02 bettery point of this article.

      • It escapes me that someone would pay at least 3 times the cost for an electric vehicle and then talk about the fuel is cheaper while forgetting that approximately 1/3 the price of gasoline is taxes in the US and worse in Europe.
        And what happens when the electricity costs increase considerably as promised by Obama.
        For those who want to compare the the specs the TESLA is quite heavy:
        “Model S Specifications. Length 196.0″ … Curb weight 4,647.3 lbs; Weight distribution Front 48%, … Compatible with Tesla Wall Connector;”
        This is about 1000 lbs more than a Chevy Impala with an engine and transmission, etc, so a comparable size internal combustion car is less weight.
        It will generally take more energy to produce a heavier car

      • It also takes more energy to MOVE a heavier car. and Newtons of force don’t care if you produced them by burning a fuel in a ICE, or by turning an electric motor.

    • If the oil conspiracy could have killed them, they would havr long ago. There are several all-electric vehicles out now and more on the way…not to mention hybrids.

    • Agreed Badger. This is not the first EV eco-bashing I’ve seen.
      NUTS to the emissions. They are just better to drive and will shortly become cheaper than piston engined dinosaurs

      • I’ve been hearing how electrics are about to take off for almost 50 years now. Usually by people such as yourself who are blind to reality.

      • Only if the subsidies remain. And the subsidies cannot remain if the revenue from the piston engined dinosaurs declines substantially.
        What percentage of gasoline fuel cost contributes to government revenue in your state?
        When that revenue begins to decline significantly they (the guys that need to budget to pay for the roads, rail, bike paths, and other miscellaneous “transportation” infrastructure will at first try to raise the fuel tax; then reality will hit and they will need to go somewhere else to pay for the roads (as well as the electric distribution upgrades). Higher registration for costs for EVs’ … weight/mile tax based on the required GPS in your car … upfront disposal fees, etc. And finally the selfish will stand up and say raising taxes on their lifestyle preference is just plain & simple eco-bashing.

      • It takes X Newtons of force over Y grams of mass to accelerate anything. It doesn’t matter where the force originates. Any other explanation is nonsense.

      • John
        AUSTRALIA NEW CAR SALES HAVE REALISED GROWTH OF 2% ON 2015 TO SET A RECORD OF 1,178,133 CARS SOLD IN 2016. (From Practical Motoring Web.)
        Could you pick a number between 1 and 10,000 as your guess as to how many of those new car sales were Electric?
        Everyone can play so have a guess.
        And the winner is…219. (From Jo Nova..electric car industry wants subsidies..)
        So if they double this year and the next, and the next, and the next, and the next it will be about 440…880…1760…3520 and 7040 by 2021. Also known as a miracle.
        Unless one thing happens. The only thing that could ever make a large number of people purchase an EV or for these bandits to become cheaper than the internal combustion engine stars of transport.
        Big Time Subsidies and a swag of Other Peoples Money. (My favourite Electric model is The OPM.)
        Take the huge and unlikely doubling of sales for EV out to 2025 and you get about 112,000 vehicles per year of the 1.3 to 1.5 million new cars sold at 2025. In that 2017 to 2025 period Australians will have bought, with current sales and 2% growth, about 10,000,000 plus actual cars.
        But electric cars are gonna become cheaper and more popular than all the others!
        Any time now…soon…it’s just around the corner…wont be long…maybe when they do turn up they will be packed to the hilt with all those great big storage batteries that are gonna store mammoth amounts of power and will run big cities like as easy as pie.
        Then again that is also gonna happen soon…it’s just around the corner…won’t be long…it is on the way right now…or soon will be…just a few blips to work thru such as it ain’t been invented yet…but it is coming …
        We await, with bated breath, the Beatification of Saint Elon and his Tesla Vehicle of Righteousness and Virtue.
        Amen Brethren…

    • I love the way electric car enthusiasts are so immune to real world data.
      They go so far as to declare that any data that goes against their fondest wishes is nothing more than a conspiracy.
      In that fashion, they are very similar to global warming enthusiasts. In fact there is a sizable overlap between the two groups.
      PS, if your belief that electrics are so much cheaper, why do they need massive subsidies to get people to buy them?
      PPS: The only reason why electric cars are cheaper to run is because the IC cars are paying all the taxes to support the roads that both of you drive on.

    • Badger,
      They may be cheaper in a mild climate, but for those who live in more rigorous climates such as Canada, Russia, or the Northern US, there are special requirements to keep the battery warm in the Winter, and additional drain on the battery to keep passengers warm in the Winter. These problems rarely get mentioned.

    • “these battery cars would be a damn sight cheaper to run than a petrol motor.”
      Breeeep breeeep! Red herring alert!
      It’s the overall cost that matters, not just the operational ones. And yeah, don’t forget to factor in the gas taxes which pay for highway maintenance that they get a free ride on.

    • Did you know, Badger, that BP, that’s “British Petroleum”, was the largest producer of PV solar panels worldwide in 2007? Times have changed now with China entering the field, but your “big oil” boogeymen seem to love subsidy farming alternative energy as much as the next guy…”destroy”? Stop reading Huffpo, Badge.

    • Badger: “…but these battery cars would be a damn sight cheaper to run than a petrol motor.”
      Don’t be so sure about that. The 100kWh it takes to charge the battery costs $15.42 in California assuming the published utility rate and 100% efficiency for the charger. That’s good for about 300 miles if you don’t need the A/C or heater. State and federal gas taxes in California are $0.56/gallon or less than 2 cents per mile for a comparable ICE car. So when they start road taxing electrics comparable to conventional cars that will be another $5 or $6 per 300 miles. So very roughly about $21 to $22 per 300 miles for the electric and about $21 to $22 per 300 miles for a comparable ICE car at 35mpg and $2.50/gallon. All that is very approximate obviously and depends on the driver, road conditions, weather and traffic. Where I live in the northern plains the electric rates, gasoline and road taxes are all quite a bit cheaper but the ratio is about the same. If gas goes back up to $4/gallon you might come out ahead if you didn’t worry about the purchase price, loan interest and insurance expense. I gather you are in the UK where petrol prices are quite a bit higher than the US, but so are electric rates so you will have to do your own pencilling there. The biggest concern is the battery. A modern ICE is very reliable and can usually run for 300,000 miles. That would be well over 1,000 cycles for an electric since the battery would almost never be run completely down before charging. I seriously question if the battery would make it that long since the smaller lithium batteries are normally only good for 300 to 500 cycles. If that is the case then the battery will only be good for maybe 150,000 miles or less.

      • You need to include the energy saving of electric cars by regenerative braking such as happens in hybrid cars. The battery in my hybrid lasted for ~9 years and was still going strong when I traded it in for a new car this year.

        • “The battery in my hybrid lasted for ~9 years and was still going strong…” Curious about how much the capacity degenerated during that time and what kind of use it received.

      • Phil; I think the efficiency achieved by things like regenerative braking is included in the range estimates for a fully-charged battery.
        Using numbers from my earlier discussion, and a gas price where I live (Virginia, US) of $2.40 / gal, I come up with:
        – Cost per kWh of gas ~ $0.07
        – Energy “mileage” for a 40 mpg economy car: 1.2 miles per kWh
        – Energy “mileage” for a 2017 Chevy Volt: 4.4 miles per kWh
        – I’m currently paying $0.12 per kWh for electricity. Assuming a charge efficiency of 0.8 (a guess on my part, since I really don’t know), the energy to charge an EV battery comes to $0.15 per kWh charged — or about twice that of gasoline.
        Since an EV is at least twice as efficient (in terms of miles per kWh) as an ICE vehicle — 3.6 times more efficient, in the case of the 2017 Volt, the energy costs to drive an EV do, in fact, seem to come out lower. Of course, all my calculations are based on what I think are reasonable assumptions that could be wrong — and the back of my envelop is already cluttered with too many other projects. (I’d be curious to see critiques of my analysis.)
        Not being a huge fan of EVs, these numbers are somewhat surprising for me — maybe we ARE getting closer to seeing practical electric cars (once the costs come down, range improves, and infrastructure is established for fast and convenient recharging).

      • markl June 22, 2017 at 9:13 am
        “The battery in my hybrid lasted for ~9 years and was still going strong…” Curious about how much the capacity degenerated during that time and what kind of use it received.

        No obvious change in performance over time. In the hybrid it’s used almost continually, every time you start the car and every time you brake for instance.

        • Oops, I glossed over the ‘hybrid’ part. Those batteries aren’t used to the extremes of an EV. They should last longer.

      • Mark June 22, 2017 at 10:07 am
        Not being a huge fan of EVs, these numbers are somewhat surprising for me — maybe we ARE getting closer to seeing practical electric cars (once the costs come down, range improves, and infrastructure is established for fast and convenient recharging).

        I would anticipate further growth in hybrids as they will also benefit from advances in battery systems, advent of charging stations would help plug-in variants too.

      • Mark: “Using numbers from my earlier discussion, and a gas price where I live (Virginia, US) of $2.40 / gal, I come up with:…”
        You left out the state and fed road taxes added to gasoline prices. That’s $0.407/gallon in VA so the actual “energy cost” for gasoline there is not $2.40 but less than $2.00. When they figure out how to tax the electrics equivalent to gasoline taxes they won’t look nearly as good.

        • “…When they figure out how to tax the electrics equivalent to gasoline taxes they won’t look nearly as good. …” Especially when you consider the taxes incurred for the businesses of pulling it out of the ground, getting it refined, transport to the pump, and delivering it to the car. Fossil fuel taxes are significant and a major portion of the state and federal revenue stream beyond road tax.

      • Good point, Bill. I suspect that home EV chargers may someday have a usage monitor that reports “fuel” use for the purpose of road taxes (a more preferable solution to the road tax issue than cars that report their miles driven, IMHO).
        That said, the adjustment in price for removing the taxes from consideration changes the gasoline energy cost to ~$0.06 per kWh (from my original estimate of $0.07) vs. electricity’s $0.12 (in my part of the world) — or half the cost of electricity. But, with an EV’s miles per kWh nearly 4 times better than an equivalent gasoline vehicle, their energy cost per mile is still going to be better. As battery technology improves, I think this trend will continue.
        Of course, the cost of an EV and their limited ranges (not to mention a lack of infrastructure to support “refueling”) remain a serious obstacle to their wide-spread use. But, I think these obstacles can be overcome, eventually. But, I doubt (at least for the near future) they will replace anything other than vehicles used for personal transportation/commuting (small ~4 passenger cars vs. the pickup truck I use to haul things around, pull my trailer, go camping, etc.).

      • Bill Murphy:
        1. I don’t know what a KWh costs in CA, but I can readily look up gas prices…
        2. Where I live, electricity is approx $.11/kWh. Gas is approximately $2.10.
        3. Meanwhile, in CA, gas is nearly $3.00/gal.
        The cost per mile should also be measured in expenses for dealing with smog, such as health problems, etc.
        -Also, if you are going to assume every car goes 300K miles, that also means 60 oil changes, at the least. There’s carbon released for every drop of refined oil…

    • Not surprising to me. But the biggest problem with widespread use of electric vehicles is the total transformation of grid technology required to make them work. Charging big lithium batteries to give them any sort of useful lifespan means charging them at similar charge rates to their depletion rate (ideally much slower). When are most people not using their vehicle? At night. When are the most people going to rely on a car to commute? When the weather is bad. These are times when renewables are worst at producing reliable energy. Managing grid energy demand is hard at the moment – electric vehicles make that much harder. At the moment you can top up an empty fuel tank in about 2 minutes. Good luck getting 50kwH into a battery in that time! You’re going to need a substation at every recharge station. The urban planners better get going right now cos city centers are going to look very different if electric vehicles are to work. Yes, it’s all solvable, but that extra complexity comes with extra costs and electricity overheads – who is going to pay? You can’t close down all the coal and gas plants, create a complex grid and then expect ‘renewable’ power to cost the same as it does when being subsidised by an essentially free distribution grid.
      Modern life is producing plenty of other hypocrisy around energy use that folk keen on ‘saving us from climate change’ are happy to ignore: mobile phones use huge amounts of electricity in their network transmission towers; miniaturisation of electronic devices makes them ever harder to recycle and more fragile, decreasing their longevity; marketing types are happy to promote the next gen device meaning the old one is consigned to landfill. Many of the components used in sophisticated electronics are downright toxic – as are parts in ICE vehicles. But it’s relatively easy to drain and disassemble conventional vehicles for scrap – I can’t see that being anywhere as easy with EV’s and e-waste generally is becoming a big problem.
      Lets not dwell on the cyber security risks with all this fancy electronics and grid tech, nor flammability risks with all that electrical energy waiting to be liberated in a crash…
      Electric cars will soon have a place on racetracks. But as viable alternatives for mainstream motoring and haulage in the next 20 years? No way, no matter how much energy or CO2 the battery manufacturing takes. Fuel cells, maybe, hydrogen maybe. We could keep burning fossil fuels, or embrace Nuclear. I have no doubt we will figure out how to get a better source of energy than burning fossil fuels eventually. The way to expedite that is to get taxpayer subsidies and CO2 phobia out of the equation and let the market find a better way. For the record I drive a 17 year old Subaru WRX with 270,000 km on the clock – I feel morally obliged to ensure my use of irreplaceable high octane petrol is something I relish!

    • How about merely the CO2 emissions when the cars burn up? And, all those nasty combustion by-products from composites and plastics…..

      • There are of course far more petrol fueled vehicles by several orders of magnitude. Your comment would be relevant if the rate of fires was higher in petrol fueled vehicles than in battery powered ones, and then, only if CO2 emissions were truely of concern but I have seen no evidence that is true. As far as the rate of rise in different vehicles – I don’t know.

      • andrewpattullo: you are strictly correct. Is this better?
        From a Harvard Business Review article:
        “Tesla should take a page out of political contests and draw attention to the negatives of their competitors — in this case, gasoline-powered cars. The statistics are powerful. Last year there were 172,000 gasoline-powered car fires, a little-known fact. Given that some 240 million cars are registered, that means a fire for every 1,300 or 1,400 cars on the road. Compare that to three fires from some 20,000 Tesla cars. The fire incidents are over four times as great in gasoline-powered cars.”

      • John, let’s wait until the average age of the two fleets are similar.
        Until then you are just pushing yet another invalid comparison.

      • Honestly, gas powered cars SHOULD have higher instances of fires then EV’s. They carry around multiple Gallons/Liters of one of the most flammable liquids we know how to produce, and many are kept on the road long past their expected lifespan and in poor repair.
        Of course, we as a society have already accepted that as a price of using gasoline as a fuel. If we hadn’t, we would have already switched over to diesel which has a significantly lower chance of catching fire in an accident. (in fact, we mostly have for military and industrial use for just this reason)
        And this price will continue to be considered by many as EV tech continues to mature. And as Gasoline powered ICE’s continue to mature, or did you think that gasoline engines had reached a plateau and would now stop improving? ^_^

      • I wonder how many were relatively new new cars like the Three Teslas.(One single brand as against all other makes). I guess the figures don’t tell us much about the circumstances really.

  4. I would love to see someone try to drive a Tesla Cross Country in the same amount of time that it takes to drive a Gasoline powered vehicle

      • They would have to improve the battery R&R time. I doubt very much if it can be done in less time than it takes to fill a 15 gallon tank (< 5 min).

      • Currently the Tesla Supercharger takes 1 hour to recharge their 85KWH battery so you would need a surpercharger station available every 250 miles and would have to stop every three hours for an hour to recharge. While driving my Charger, I stop every 350 miles for 5 minutes to refuel

      • You assume the existence of stations equipped to do battery swaps.
        Spend a few minutes to think of the engineering required to build such a station.
        First you would need equipment to raise the car so that the battery pack could be accessed.
        Then you would need equipment capable of dropping several hundred pounds of batteries safely to the ground and loading an equally heavy replacement pack into place.
        Finally, since each model of car will have it’s own style of battery pack, your station will need room to store and charge all of those batteries. (they can’t be packed too closely together as you need room to ventilate the heat of charging)
        Not to mention the initial capital cost of buying all that equipment as well as the hundreds of battery packs.
        Finally, since batteries have a finite life, you need some kind of equipment to accurately measure the remaining life in the battery pack being pulled so that you can compare it to the remaining life in the pack being installed so that a differential charge can be applied to the purchase. (Plus you are going to have issues of trust. When the garage owner installs a battery pack and tells you that it is almost brand new so he’s going to have to charge a couple of hundred extra dollars because the one he just pulled from your car is 4 years old, do you trust him?)
        Battery pack swapping will never work and anyone who pushes the notion is either delusional or has never thought it through.

      • Bryan, every time a battery is supercharged like that, it takes a significant hit in total expected life span.

      • That much touted ‘feature’ never materialized. Remember when BYD (?) was going to install thousands of battery swap stations for Teslas? Never happened. Being an integral part of the frame the operation isn’t so quick and simple and the ‘SuperCharger’ stations make more sense. But what I think busted the idea is the logistics of replacing a valuable depreciating asset and assigning values to what was removed and what was put back in. The battery is about 1/4+ of the car’s value. It’s not like dropping a fresh battery in a flashlight and throwing away the bad one.

      • 70 hours travel time or 70 hours total time? It only took Solar Impulse 2 around 1000 hours to fly around the world Travel Time (42 days) but the trip took more than 16 months total time (about 500 days)

      • Google Maps indicates the driving time from LA to NY as 42 hours (2777 miles) add 10 refueling stops about 50 minutes and probably 2 overnight stays
        Wow total refueling time is less than one supercharger recharge time. Tesla has to work on their recharge time. (Without the supercharger you need 12 – 14 days for the trip stopping to recharge overnight every 250 miles)

      • 59 hours, eh? So they used six people and a support vehicle to do what I could do in my Subaru solo right now with only mild sleep deprivation, or about 14 hours faster if I had a co-driver, without risking a speeding ticket on the way.
        EVs have truly arrived.

    • My car takes 110 seconds to fully charge and has an 800 mile range. Of course it’s an evil diesel that makes NOX. 🙂

      • NOx, SOx and particulates! Diesels are great for heavy haulage (and marine, much safer than petrol) but only came into small cars because they have better fuel economy and governments distorted the market by taxing it as a lower rate. But in terms of harmful air pollution (rather than benign CO2), diesels are shocking.

    • Fair enough. Having just finished a drive up and back from Santa Clara, CA to Fountain Hills, AZ, I’m pretty sure that would have been much less convenient in a Tesla. OTOH, the vast majority of mile I put on my car are from much shorter daily commutes. As I have in the past when my daily commuter wasn’t (IMO) reliable enough for long trips, I could easily rent an ICE equipped car when I need to go on a long trip.

  5. I’ve never even seen an electric car but one thing I wondered was this: are there any more accidents, or pedestrian injuries, caused by them because they must run so much quieter than normal IC-engined cars?

    • Luc – good question. I drive an EV. My experience is that if you are going fast enough to hurt anyone road noise dominates – same regardless of power train. Engine noise on a coasting piston engined car is tiny and that is a common enough situation

      • Engine noise on a coasting piston engined car is tiny …
        This happened with a bunch of folks in a parking lot, yesterday.
        Those facing the approaching car had to warn those with backs to it.

    • I’ve read that this is concern for the blind. John, you can pick up non-trivial injuries even if the car is only going 10mph. (not life threatening, but you will have to go to the hospital to have your broken leg splinted.)

      • Mark – agreed 10 mph is enough to hurt someone but at 10 mph you already have enough road noise to drown engine noise in an upmarket piston-engined car

    • “I’ve never even seen an electric car but one thing I wondered was this: are there any more accidents, or pedestrian injuries, caused by them because they must run so much quieter than normal IC-engined cars?”
      I’ve got a Tesla, and my solution to this is called “Pink Floyd.”

  6. Without getting too pedantic, you should subtract out the carbon dioxide emissions required to manufacture the gasoline powered cars to get an adequate comparison.
    If I understood the article correctly, their math assumes an average usage for a car is 1224 miles per year. This would mean that 8.2 years is only 10,000 miles. I drive that many miles in 3-4 months. the “emissions pay back period” would be a lot less.

    • Surely the point is that the CO2 emissions from making a EV without a battery are going to be very similar to those for making a comparable FF car. So those net out.
      The CO2 emissions from making the battery is an additional matter that is associated with the EV bur not with the FF car.

      • I don’t agree. A battery powered car is much simpler. No transmission, no cat converter, no emission controls, no complex fuel injection system, etc.etc. I have a battery powered golf caddy. It has a battery, an electric motor directly connected to the drive axle. Simple. Compare that to my gasoline powered lawn mower. Not so simple.

        • @Trebla
          “I don’t agree. A battery powered car is much simpler.”
          Well you may not agree but do you have any evidence to support that?
          Of course an EV is a simpler system but is it actually much simpler in terms of cost to produce and what do you mean by ‘much’? 1%? 10%?

      • James Bolivar: I have converted a diesel car to electric. I have a huge pile of junk in the garage – exhaust system, a 2.2 litre engine with turbocharger, fuel pump, fuel tank, radiator, hoses, fuel lines, sophisticated engine mounts to isolate vibration. It just goes on and on

      • @John Hardy
        But you still uses the body, the chassis (or other structural parts) the wheels, the axles, the seats, it just goes on and on. And there are a number of things that you added, e.g. 2-4 electric motors.
        I never said that the CO2 emissions from making a EV and a comparable FF car would be identical but similar. As someone else has said, the cost of something is a reasonable proxy for the amount of ‘stuff’ (materials, energy, etc) that went into making it.
        If an EV is so much simpler to make then then the retail cost should be similar or even less. In fact an EV costs 50-100% more than a comparable FF car. So I need to see some reliable numbers to convince me that the EV is massively cheaper to make.

      • As mentined by a few people, you need to do a simialr life cycle analysis for other cars if you want to campare. You cannot just assume stuff, you need to do the study. These studies have been done already, an example is summarised here;
        We see from P25 that abou 11 tonnes of CO2 are emitted in the manufacture, and 35-40 tonnes during use.
        We can compare this to the article above:
        “Even before buying the car emissions occurred, corresponding to approximately 5.3 tons and 17.5 tons of Carbon Dioxide.”
        That 5.3 tonnes does not look so bad, but that 17.5 tonnes is already nearly twice the Audi, and that is only the battery.
        But will we get this back during the use of the vehicle? MPG figures do not make that much sense for an electric car, so lets use energy needed to travel 100 miles as a comparison.
        Petrol cars typically use something like 100kwhr/100miles this is about 36mpg.
        Nissan leaf does twice as well at 50kwhr/100miles, and Tesla apparently does even better at 22kwhr/100 miles.
        Taking this into account, it seems likely that the savings during use will more than compensate for the extra use during manufacture, but maybe not by as much as people would expect.

      • John, and the total weight of all those components is what? It’s a small fraction of the total weight of the car.

      • And the electric car must be recharged by plugging it into and electrical outlet that is powered by a coal or oil fueled power plant.
        Double dumb.

      • Well a Tesla model S certainly does have a transmission.
        At the back in the middle between what looks like two electric motors you have a rather conventional differential. Well it is slightly unconventional in that it is not driven by a hypoid spiral right angled gear set. I imagine it is some sort of pinion gear possibly with a slight Vee shaped pinion , but maybe plain ordinary spur gears.
        So why the two electric motors, and a differential ??
        Well actually one of those cylindrical packages IS an electric motor and the other is actually a box full of DC-three phase AC variable frequency drive electronics.
        If it was me, I would have ditched the mechanical differential and put in two real electric motors, and place the electronics box somewhere else. You still need the somewhat large reduction spur gear drive (one for each wheel), but no differential. I don’t know how many pole pairs the electric motors have. At some point there is a diminishing return for more poles and a lower synchronous rotation rate to reduce the gear train ratio.
        It’s actually a fairly well designed setup but I still would have used two motors, and I would have put the rear brakes inboard as well.
        A mechanical differential; limited slip or whatever, will decide itself on the inside versus outside wheel driving torque, which affects road holding and handling.
        With two motors you can have smart drive electronics to set the relative torques to suit the road conditions.
        Also I don’t know why you need to have 650 horsepower just to go to the grocery store.
        Electric cars do have killer acceleration. The drive torque is highest when the rotor is totally stalled. ICEs need to have a slip clutch or equivalent, to engage an already rotating engine, which is not running at a very efficient condition on startup from a stand still.

      • Mark W. “we see on P25” refers to page 25 of the report. I would not anticipate this page being a problem.

      • (a)Tesla battery + motor is the power plant at issue.
        (b)In any gas powered car, you have the Engine, Transmission, Fuel tank, fuel lines, Carb/Injector system, Lead-Acid battery, Starter, and Alternator-for the analogous power plant.
        So, comparing the carbon production cost of (a) to the *usage* carbon cost of (b) is already a deception.
        -Why would a legit study need to engage in intellectual sleight of hand?
        Give us the carbon production cost of everything in (b), and we are at the START of a talking point. For simplicity’s sake, I’d expect that the electric motor in the Tesla is probably close to the starter motor, AND alternator in the gas engined-car.

    • You’re off by a factor of around ten, about 10,000-12,000 miles per year, figure 100,000 miles in eight years.

    • Lorcan…
      Read the article, the quoted CO 2 emissions are just to manufacture the battery not the car. The Tesla S is heavier than a Chevy Impala so it probably takes even more emissions to manufacture a heavier car in addition to the emissions to manufacture the battery. The 3 times price tag for the Tesla S tells you something about emissions also, possibly all the energy to produce aluminum and other exotic materials. True, I don’t think they mentioned the CO 2 emissions to produce the gasoline, but maybe that is in the entire Swedish article. But the emissions to produce the electricity might be a wash in this case especially with coal powered generation plants.

      • Heavier cars also take more energy to start and have higher rolling resistance.
        They never factor that in when trying to compare the efficiency of EC vs IC.

      • Again, the point is that manufacture of the engine , exhaust and transmission are also required for a standard car.
        That’s why it’s not apples to oranges.

      • The battery is not the engine. The motors that drive the 4 wheels a re comparable to the engine so it is apples to apples.
        The electric car weighs about 1000 pounds more and that tells the story either in labor or materials. The comparison is valid.

  7. Not to be a kill joy, but the amount of CO2 generated in the production may be irrelevant.
    What is the total production of CO2 in a mid-sized car down to the last nut and bolt.
    It is not just going to be swapping out the gas tank for a couple hundred pound battery, much of the mechanical construction of the two cars will differ. Transmissions as well as suspension will be different. The questions are going to be which vehicle has less manufactured parts, less man hours required in the fabrication of all components,, the list goes on.
    I have no clue which vehicle will be a better bargain production wise.

    • The triple cost of a Tesla and extra 1000 lb over a Chevy Impala with engine and transmission should give a clue as to which is a better bargain production wise.

  8. Looking up how a Tesla Gigafactory is powered I find this ‘The Gigafactory will also be powered by renewable energy sources, with the goal of achieving net zero energy’
    so that’s solved that, then

    • If that renewable energy weren’t being used by the battery factory, it would be used by something else.
      So in order to make your emissions free batteries, something else is going to have more emissions.

    • Griff June 20, 2017 at 10:12 am
      “Looking up how a Tesla Gigafactory”
      Griff so called Gigafactories don’t work. Too big.
      Parking lots. if one worker gets to park a hundred feet from the door and another 1/4 to 1/2 miles the company has to provide transportation to the door
      next time clocks, if worker “A” walks in the north side and punches the clock, but works on the south side, he may have a 15 minute stroll before getting to his work station. The man hours wasted just getting around in large factories make them to ineffective. Better several mid sized and small.

    • So the factory shuts down when the sun does not shine or the wind does not blow?
      Give me a break with that Propaganda!

    • Would that be the same batteries that spontaneously explode in cell phones, lap tops, e cigs….and cars?

      • Yeah, and because internal combustion engines sometimes catch on fire, we shouldn’t use those, either.

      • Yep, the ‘petrol catches fire too’ argument, just doesn’t stack up. I’d bet most petrol vehicle fires come about as a result of high speed crashes caused by drink-driving, car-theft and from vehicles which are old and in a poor state of repair. If electric vehicles were mainstream, there would be a lot more fires. Lithium batteries are intrinsically unsafe: crushing them will produce a fire. Petrol on the other hand needs to be liberated from it’s container in an oxidising atmosphere and with a source of ignition. Engineering solutions to make petrol safe are way easier than making large electric currents, high voltages and lithium batteries safe. There’s a good reason you need a license to work on high voltages but not to fill up a car with petrol and it’s not just that we’ve had petrol fuelled cars for over 100 years.

  9. So manufacture of a Tesla’s battery produces as much CO2 as 1925 gallons of gasoline.
    Average gas usage in the US comes to about 600 gallons per year (22mpg 250m/w).
    Assuming the 265mile 85kWh battery is charged with ~ 18% loss to just round it to 100kWh to charge (very close to accurate average over lifespan) a charge for 265m means that the Tesla S creates about 1.3lbs CO2 per week for the same driving distances. That means in the consumption-creation timeframe, The Tesla will match the efficiency of an automobile in about 3.5 years.
    This presumes 1 charge cycle per week for 175 weeks. A typical loss of 7% capacity over 50,000mi/80kkm would effectively degrade the battery at this use rate by ~6% by the time it hit the break-even point. (190 weeks at this rate is 7%). We can establish that at 200,000 miles the car will have lost to about 19mpg when the tesla s 85kwh is at 70% remaining capacity and still requiring nearly 100kWh to charge fully over 10 hour period. Keep in mind that Tesla warrants the 85kWh battery for 8 years with unlimited miles which means the car will have covered only 110,240m and lost only 14% by “expected” end of warranty. So an expectation of making it to 200,000 miles is plausible before the systems start experiencing undervolt amperage issues that start to drastically reduce further life expectancy.
    In the end it’s A.O.K. that the Tesla S battery costs 2000 gallons of gas to produce, because over its 16 year life its only going to cause about 3000lbs pounds of CO2 when a car will cause 200,000lbs from fuel alone over that same 200,000 mile range lifespan.
    I remember an article that said that the Tesla S cars themselves cost about twice as much CO2 to make vs a normal gasohog due to the alloys and aluminum… but when you’re comparing 1.4 metric tons of CO2 to 90.9 metric tons of CO2, well, you get the picture.
    Talk about a stupid article to circle the wagons around.

    • ( to clarify, last numbers are about “fuel” cost of 200,000 mile lifespan, if manufacture of battery is included it becomes 41,800lbs or 18.9 metric tons of CO2 total cost)

      • Nope. You are not calculating the CO2 generation for the battery charging correctly. At 100 kWh per 265 mile charge – and assuming no degradation in battery efficiency – you end up with 2.65 miles traveled per kWh. That means that you consume about 75,500 kWh in order to travel 200,000 miles. We can quibble on the CO2 per kWh, but if we use your figure of 1.3 we end up with 98,150 pounds of CO2 emitted to travel 200,000 miles. In the typical gasoline car you outlined, you would have about 191,000 lbs of CO2 emitted. These numbers are for the energy consumption alone, without consideration for the CO2 generated to make the cars, batteries, etc..
        An EV has a base advantage of about 2:1 on day-to-day CO2 emissions. The base advantage is small enough that things like the carbon footprint of manufacturing a large battery might seriously impact the net “advantage” in reducing CO2 emissions.

    • RE: “when you’re comparing 1.4 metric tons of CO2 to 90.9 metric tons of CO2, well, you get the picture.”
      The picture I get is of a healthier, more abundant biosphere, as more sequestered CO2 is returned to our earthly atmosphere! Record crop yields and ‘greening’ of desert areas is a very positive result from moderate releases of sequestered CO2 into our CO2 impoverished atmosphere. Concerns about atmospheric CO2 are chimeric canards from fossilized-thinking AGW climate scientists and socialist government regulatory bureaucrats. CO2 is not ‘pollution’. It is the foundation of all life on this planet. It isn’t a ‘picture’. It’s reality. Get it? Got it? Good!

    • 1.3lbs of CO2 is the amount for only 1KWh of typical U.S. electricity production. But you are estimating 100kWh of use per week. So the real figure is 100 times that at 130 lbs of CO2 per week. You get about 20 lbs of CO2 per gallon of gas, so using your yearly estimate of 600 gallons, we get 11.53 gallons/week which generates about 230 lbs of CO2 week for the ICD. That jibes with my understanding of an EV using around half the amount of fossil fuel per equivalent mile traveled. Did you really think than an EV was somehow nearly 65 times more energy efficient (fossil fuels dominate U.S. energy production) than an ICE vehicle as suggested by your comparison of 1.4 metric tons to 90.9 metric tons? The reality is much closer to being a factor of 2.

    • Your numbers don’t jibe. Over the life of the battery you’re using about 75,000 kilowatt hours for your 200,000 mile. Each kW-hr produces about 1.1 pounds of CO2. Rounded, and without taking transmission and conversion inefficiencies into account, that’s 85,000 lbs of CO2, not 3,000 lbs.

  10. This result may be made somewhat obsolete by the nanotechnology techniques just released that claim to be able to produce a cathode so cheap that the battery prices will be cut in half. Certainly that will impact their
    energy production requiements. Tesla is also planning several battery gigafactories and I am quite certain that Musk will power those factories with solar power, in much the same way that h e powers his supercharging stations.
    This argument is much the same as the one about the electric fuel used by the EVs being produced by
    fossil fuels. That’s not the EVs fault. Drive your EV in South Carolina – their power soon will be 80% nuclear and over 80% carbon-free.

    • Nano technology techniques offer no such benefits (at least over the next 20 years.) The only way to effectively manage the production of such batteries is an extraordinarily low volume/high cost process.

    • Claims are one thing. Production quantities are something else.
      There’s no way a recharging station can be powered by solar.

    • Of course it isn’t the EV’s fault. It is the fault of the people producing and buying them without fully considering what is required to generate the electricity to operate the EV in their location.
      BTW, everything I could find suggest that the Tesla supercharging stations are powered from the local grid.

  11. Storage batteries aren’t the answer. We’ve been working on them seriously for a long time so it’s probably unreasonable to expect real breakthroughs. Back in the late 1970s someone quipped:

    There are liars, there are damned liars, and then there are battery chemists.

    I’ve never found any reason to doubt the truth of that.
    Over the years I’ve followed a number of technologies:
    oil from turkey guts – it worked but wasn’t economic.
    air powered car – hasn’t worked yet, I’m not holding my breath.
    aquion battery – works but isn’t economic, the company is bankrupt, actually seems to have advantages for some applications.
    I have been following ammonia as fuel for a while. It hasn’t fizzled out yet ie. people are regularly publishing new work. Here’s an article speculating on ‘bunker’ ammonia as a maritime fuel. 🙂 I’m betting it won’t happen for a long time. Once everyone realizes that CAGW is bunk, there will be no point pursuing ammonia as fuel.

      • Sure, as long as you vouch that you are a non-exaggerating battery chemist. 🙂
        Back in the day, I was very impressed with a spiral wound cell called the Gates Cell. link It had very low internal resistance, so much so that it was actually useful at temperatures down to -40. I never understood why it didn’t take over the world.

      • I would never exaggerate battery chemistry.
        There are plenty of spiral wound cells. Almost all rechargeable cells are use a spiral wound construction or a plate construction to improve the internal resistance.
        I’m not familiar with a “Gates Cell”. Your link is to a lead acid battery. Lead Acid has plenty of advantages and disadvantages to other technologies. It’s mature technology and well understood with the biggest downside being the lead and the sulfuric acid electrolyte. I don’t believe that article refers to spiral wound cell. There may be some spiral wound lead acid batteries (I made one in high school), but most lead acid batteries use plates.

      • lorcanbonda June 20, 2017 at 12:52 pm
        I would never exaggerate battery chemistry.

        OK I take it back.
        The Gates Cell is/was lead acid. I never did use them in the field. I can’t remember why. I did run extensive environmental tests on them and I remember them being pretty amazing at low temperatures as compared with any other batteries (all lead-acid and ni-cad IIRC) I tested.

      • lorcanbonda June 20, 2017 at 4:05 pm
        Lead Acid batteries are very good at low temperature.

        Only in relative terms. Except for the Gates Cells, the lead acid batteries available to us in the 1970s would not take a charge at -40. I would say that the biggest problem with the remote systems I was working with was getting around the limitations of the batteries.

  12. As a rule I don’t read articles that were translated by a machine. It leaves too much room for translation error.
    This wasn’t informative at all.

  13. First post to WUWT: Does this or any study reference the energy cost of recycling these big batteries, or any Lion batteries? As I know so far, no one is yet doing this. I read somewhere that recycling is supposed to be a part of the Tesla delusion, I won’t hold my breath. It bothers me when I see ‘zero emission vehicle’ on stickers or license plate trim rings-there is no such thing. Imagine a pile of a million dead Tesla batteries, I am guessing that is why battery production is in Nevada and not Fremont, CA.

  14. In Sweden, the power production is mainly of fossil-nuclear and hydropower why lower emissions had been achieved.
    And the pseudogreen here would like to replace both nuclear and hydro with ‘sustainable’ power sources, like windpower …

    • Google translate strikes again. What the Swedish translates as is:
      “In Sweden, power production is mainly from non-fossil nuclear and hydropower so lower emissions would have been achieved.”

  15. Even before buying the car emissions occurred, corresponding to approximately 5.3 tons and 17.5 tons of Carbon Dioxide. The numbers can be difficult to relate to. As a comparison, a trip for one person round trip from Stockholm to New York by air causes the release of more than 600 kilograms of carbon dioxide, according to the UN organization ICAO calculation.

    Okay, how about “of more than 0.6 tonnes of carbon dioxide”? That’s easier to compare. 🙂
    BTW, the cost of something, barring things like monopolies, often reflects the cost of producing it. The mere fact that replacing an electric car’s batteries is extremely expensive give you a good idea that producing them entails releasing a lot of CO2.

  16. Lorcanbonda: The yearly distance 1224 miles is calculated in swedish miles. One swedish mile is 10 km so the yearly distance referred to in the article is around 7600 miles.

  17. I personally think Tesla cars are cool. My next car will be all electric. If they have enough range, and you drive one were the batteries were made and fueled using nuclear power then they are definitely a step in the green direction. Smog, unlike co2 is actually a pollutant and reducing or removing it from our cities and our lives is potentially a worthwhile thing to do. When it comes to the debate on global warming and what should or should not be done, Musk is not the enemy, and electric cars will be viable in my life time as a reliable means of transport.
    I live in Ontario, our electricity comes from 60% nuclear power or more, some 20 % hydro, some gas and some wind and solar that gets sold off at low prices ( not to us) If we made electric cars here, and drove them, they would indeed be clean

      • I’m 68 and I also think Teslas are really cool. The top of the range Model S will out drag any Lambo or Ferrari at highway speeds and has a single gear ratio so no stirring of cogs. Petrol cars are toast

      • John Hardy June 20, 2017 at 11:48 am
        Hi john ever here of the Girandoni air rifle? It was produced for the Austrian army in the 1780s. Like the Tesla it was really cool.
        But it was a failure. can’t really say why, just never became popular outside it’s own “niche” .
        Below is a link to it you may want to red about it. Just a lesson about cool things that just cannot catch on.

      • Mark: look up “Ad Hominem” on Wikipedia.
        Mike the Morlock. Some things succeed and others don’t. What do you see as the parallel between the air and the prospect for EVs?

      • John Hardy June 20, 2017 at 2:01 pm
        John it’s not the parallels I see, what do you see. The air rifle had several benefits over the black power rifle it was a repeater, and silent. what do you think or see as the common liabilities, why were they a show stopper and could they ultimately be the cause of why the EV never becomes nothing more then a niche vehicle? The people who like them really like them the rest of the population are ether indifferent or negative toward them.
        Unless people see them as meeting their needs and being more convenient for them to operate they will stay a niche product.
        Also the subsides have a negative impact on the segments of the population that are not enamored with them, and creates a hostility that makes any effort to improve the view of EVs unfeasible

      • “Hi john ever here of the Girandoni air rifle? It was produced for the Austrian army in the 1780s. Like the Tesla it was really cool. But it was a failure. can’t really say why”
        Actually much the same problems that plagues electric cars. Recharging an air-bottle took a very long time unless the soldier had a horse-drawn recharging cart handy nearby, in which case it only took a fairly long time. And the rifles and air bottles were quite expensive and challenging to make and maintain with 18th century technology.
        As a matter of fact there was a niche application in which air guns were quite successful in the 18th century, i e as assasination weapons, where their quietness and lack of powder smoke was very useful, and cost and sustained rate of fire were immaterial. In many european countries possesion carried a stiff jail sentence.

      • John,
        When your fire department is running its vehicles as EV’s get back to me.
        Whats that … emergency vehicles are different … apples to oranges you say? You are only talking of cool cars & passenger cars.
        Well O.K. then I agree; EV cars are fantastic for fun, and showing off, and going to the kids soccer games, and typical urban commutes. If the subsidies are still there when I need to replace my second car I’ll look into it.

      • Nothing wrong with electric cars. Hopefully someone produces one that can compete on a real track like Nurburgring. My bet is on Audi.

      • @tty
        You may be interested to know that the Lewis and Clark expedition carried at least one of these air rifles (or one similar), primarily for hunting. Considering the length of the expedition and the inability to run down to your local Cabelas to pick up a few pounds of Pyrodex, it was an excellent choice.

      • Seems the EV fans have an insatiable appetite for pie… in the sky. Forgive me, John Hardy, but out-dragging a “Lambro” is really cool? To a 68 yr old juvenile, maybe, but not to a car buyer looking for basic transportation. The Pentagon and Post office have no ev fleet. Why not? The Pentagon has loyally followed orders from our previous CIC to believe, really believe, in CAGW. The Post office brass probably believe in it too, and appears to have the perfect situation to run ev fleet (can charge overnight, never get far from charging station; maybe you can think of a few). AFAIK, no plans to go ev, they still plan to order your “toast”. One commentator above wonders about fire trucks. I used to think that ev would be worth a look when the post office put them into the fleet. Now, even that would not convince me, because we see ev fans hand waving whenever hard facts are brought up (just one hard fact-current grid can’t handle significant increase in ev, and there are no plans or funding to upgrade grid. “oh, they charge during off-hours” is hand waving, not ad hominem to say so).

    • William, congradulations on your new Tesla, and taking money from other people who have considerably less then you.
      Also, please explain how your Tesla, other then CO2, produces less ” pollution?

      • I did in the post. I explained that electric cars made in a place where power is derived from nuclear plants, and run off that power produce less pollution. I have not bought a Tesla, simply said that they are cool. because they are. I plan on buying an EV as my next car because the technology is coming into its own. I am a skeptic of claims about EV, because I will be spending my own money. When I do that there may or may not be government subsidies in place. They are not my fault and as a tax payer for decasde I have no problem taking a subsidy.

      • To be perfectly fair, EVs DO produce less pollution (post manufacturing). To compare, one must use the same units.
        Given that gasoline has the energy content of 33.4 kWh per gallon, a typical economy car getting 40 mpg would get a mileage of 1.2 miles per kWh.
        The older Chevy Volt has a 32 kWh battery and a range of 70 miles. Remembering that you can’t run a battery down to “empty” but rather only use ~90% of its energy content, it uses 28.8 kWh to go those 70 miles. That’s a mileage of 2.4 miles per kWh — twice as much as the conventional car.
        According to Chevy’s web site, the 2017 all electric Volt has a 60 kWh battery and a range of 238 miles. If you again assume using 90% of the battery capacity, that’s a mileage of ~4.4 miles per kWh — or about 3.6 times better than a gasoline car. And if you get electricity from NG-fired plants, that’s certainly much “cleaner” than that from coal. Nuclear is even better.
        Parenthetically, I know solar is even “cleaner,” but consider the following:
        – An 8 kW solar array at my home location in VA will produce 38 kWh per day in June per pvwatts.nrel.gov (and cost roughly $27,000 to install according to estimates I’ve received from local solar installers)
        – 2 adults driving 40 miles per day, each with a 2017 Volt will use ~18kWh of electricity — or almost HALF of their home’s solar capacity
        – In January, the home array’s daily output is ~15.5 kWh — or less than that used by driving, alone.
        – Thus, solar is far less cost-efficient and practical as a replacement source for powering EVs.
        Still, over the 10 or so years that one of these batteries lasts, you’d be hard-pressed to make up the difference in CO2 output due to the battery’s production. And then, once the battery has to be replaced, you have another huge net production of CO2 (if the report in the original post is accurate).
        I don’t think they’re there, yet, but EVs are starting to get to the point where they make sense for some people (short distance commuters). Are they terribly expensive? Sure, but all early adapters pay higher costs (although I don’t like the idea of government tax breaks to help pay for them — I think such subsidies hurt the motivation to bring costs down by hiding the true cost of the car).
        That said, I have no delusions that CO2 has any deleterious impacts on our climate (and as a meteorologist with 35+ years in the field, plus computer modeling, satellite data processing, etc., it’s more than just a political belief)…

  18. I drive a full size truck that gets me roughly 14 MPG on my commute to work. I bought the truck so I could pull a heavy travel trailer around for visiting national parks and such. When an EV can tow a 10k pound trailer for hundreds of miles and allow me to “refuel” in under 10 minutes then I will consider it. Until then they are just expensive golf carts to me.

      • Tell us which “EV can tow a 10k pound trailer for hundreds of miles and allow me to “refuel” in under 10 minutes”, as jgriggs3 requested!
        As for myself, I’ve driven several hybrids and ‘EVs’. Tesla is a ‘hot house flower’ for the folks with more dollars than sense. The other EVs and hybrids fill urban commuter niches but fail at all other real world transportation needs.

      • J Mac, not so. We drive a 2007 Ford Escape full hybrid small SUV with AWD and a class 1 tow hitch (motorcycles and fishing boat). No 75k miles no problems; NiMH battery pack monitors normal. Hp is comparable to the Escape V6 of that year; hybrid is 130 hp I4 plus 72hp electric machine; V6 200hp. V6 AWD got ~18 city 22 hwy. our hybrid still gets 32 city and 28 hwy at 70mph. Otto cycle V6 needs premium, Atkinson cycle I4 uses regular. Hybrid price premium was fully paid back by the 2007 hybrid federal tax credit. We have been making money ever since buying much less regular gas than if we had the functionally equivalent V6.

      • J Mac,
        Tesla is a ‘hot house flower’ for the folks with more dollars than sense.
        Tesla is very popular in Norway …
        When we see them in Sweden, they usally have a norwegian number plate and the driver ignoring speed limits …

      • Here’s what I need from an EV:
        – 520 mile range
        – 2 minute 100% refuel/charge; no range loss
        – 7,800 lb towing capacity
        – 7 passenger seating
        – High ride height
        That is my current vehicle. Nothing against EV as it will be a large percentage of the market. I do feel good contributing CO2 to the atmosphere to help the environment. When I drive an EV I will not be helping the environment as much.

      • @John Hardy I have not driven an EV, though I have ridden in several. They ride nice, but don’t fill the needs/desires that I have for my family. If I could afford a third car and cared enough to virtue signal then perhaps it would make sense, but my wife drives too far to get to work for a Nissan Leaf, I can’t/don’t care to afford a Tesla S, we need the room of her minivan and I need to tow cap of my truck. Unless gas costs were outrageously high enough to offset the monthly payment and insurance cost of owning an EV they will not be on my radar when I look at cars.
        I don’t care to virtue signal, I care about achieving an outcome for myself and my family. I believe that my son’s future will be better served by visiting our National parks and other areas with our travel trailer than by avoiding a few pounds of CO2 in the atmosphere and thousands of lost dollars from opportunity cost. Until an EV can achieve the same outcome as either of my current vehicle at roughly the same cost, it holds no value to me.

      • Tow capacity is only one of the requirements I listed above. What EV out there today can tow a 10k LBS load, refuel in under 10 minutes,go for a range of 250-400 miles and do all of this for the 40-50k that I spent on my fully loaded Tundra?
        Answer: None. The technology isn’t there yet. Maybe in 20 years, sure, but not in the near future. There are loads of obstacles that will slowly need to be removed. Refueling takes forever today and has a limited footprint throughout the US, range is extremely limited in everything but a Tesla and Tesla’s are generally prohibitively expensive. Even the base model Tesla X is roughly $100k, double what I paid for my truck and only has a tow rating of 5k LBS.
        Rest assured, once we get even close to the requirements I listed above, even if the vehicle is 15-20k more expensive I will be looking into buying one. I just don’t see that happening for the next 10-15 years.

      • jgriggs3 June 28, 2017 at 11:03 am
        Tow capacity is only one of the requirements I listed above. What EV out there today can tow a 10k LBS load, refuel in under 10 minutes,go for a range of 250-400 miles and do all of this for the 40-50k that I spent on my fully loaded Tundra?

        A more realistic option would be a hybrid, for example the GM Silverado hybrid which tows 6000lb, 20 mpg, fuels in the same time, price is about $40k, and the range is over 500 miles.
        Given the extra torque at low speed from an electric motor I’d think hybrid pick-ups will become more common.

        • “….Given the extra torque at low speed from an electric motor I’d think hybrid pick-ups will become more common…..” Modern transmissions make up the difference in necessary torque and you don’t end up carrying the extra motor/battery weight for increased gas mileage during the majority of the truck use. Purpose built trucks and tow motors are a different story though and all electric is often an advantage.

  19. All other environmental impacts being equal, the car production that results in the most CO2 should win out to public favoritism, because that vehicle production’s respective car fertilizes plants and greens the earth the most. Even more so, wisdom concludes that market forces should be allowed to determine which manufacturer wins out. Cheers to the loser.

      • Known right now. We just need to run it up the flagpole higher, bigger, and louder until everyone finally salutes.

  20. I don’t own or drive an ‘electricity hog’ like a Tesla, Leaf, or Bolt. They are functionally useless in my world of hauling and towing loads, cold weather camping/fishing/hunting trips in the mountains, or traversing 800 miles a day in cross country driving. In truth, few people really want to drive an ovoid-ugly electrocution coffin on wheels.

    • Which is why US makers are pulling waaaaay back on producing them this year, indeed pulling back on production of all sub-compact cars as well. What do people BUY? Trucks, 4WD, SUV’s. Without the g’ment subsidies, these things are dead in the water. That’s why Alphabet, Apple, etc. are so gung-ho to come out with driverless cars virtually NO ONE wants–for fleet applications (Uber, etc.) in inner cities.

    • jmac – yes if you routinely do 800 miles a day EVs are not yet for you. Daily average is mid-20s. BTW re “electricity hog”, have you ever looked at the electricity consumed extracting and refining petrol? And I’ve not heard of many people electrocuted by an EV.

      • John, what is the electricity consumed in refining
        Oil relative to the energy provided. That is how you must measure it. That is the problem with ethanol where the energy used to produce it is close to the final energy in the product. Not so in the refinery
        Often refineries use waste heat to genter ate electricity . Can you tell us where electricity is used in refining and production?

      • Furthermore, the refining process also produces the various chemicals required for the production of plastics and so many other materials derived from crude oil. Thus, the energy used in refining is not all used for the production of transportation fuel.

  21. This analysis is not correct for Tesla. Their factory runs on renewable energy not fossil fuels, which the study assumed to be used by the battery factory. In addition batteries and electric technology and the grid get cleaner every year so electric cars are cleaner every year. Gasoline cars are dirtier every year as we have to extract from more and more difficult places like tar sands. Lets deal with the facts, not slanted arguments.

    • Mr. Musk is going to discover in a year or two that when investors take a look at their (non) returns from a non-profitable company, virtue-signalling and $2.75 get you a ride downtown if the subway runs.

      • Chris – Amazon has always provided something that a lot of people needed/wanted at a very competitive price, without relying on taxpayer subsidies. Tesla and Mr Musk? I’m not convinced.

    • There are no tar sands in Alberta unless you misuse the name for the substance to mislead people.
      The chemically correct term is oil sands. Tar comes from heating oil or other substances. The oil in the sand has not been heated.
      The Sync rude project was initially built when crude was 12 dollars a barrel. These are facts, Google tar and get the facts correct.
      Share, there is more upstream equipment but the success of the Alberta oil sands represents development using research and technology, no expensive dry holes or dictators exproperating your assets yet, but that might come with the current regime.

  22. I have no doubt this pesky little fact will be easy enough for warmists to ignore or rationalize.

  23. Why not mandate each person can buy a car just once every ten years? Or Most cars will run just fine for that long, or that you can’t get a new pair of jeans, a TV, a boat or shoes until they wear out? I mean, if you really want to cut CO2……

    • Grant,
      Most people replace cars out of desire, not necessity. I drove a 1970 IH Scout Aristocrat (4WD) for about 45 years, putting roughly 1/2 million miles on the body and power train. I would have kept it longer were it not for the rust damage that occurred in Ohio during the last 10 years (originally a California vehicle).

    • Grant said, “Why not mandate each person can buy a car just once every ten years?”
      Grant, if you want the government to control every tiny aspect of your life, then perhaps you would enjoy moving to North Korea. Personally, I prefer to make my own decisions.

      • I think he was being sarcastic. Now, whether a control freak warmist would think so is another matter entirely.

  24. There was another study on this a few years back with a similar result. Anyone else remember it? I can’t locate it.

  25. It’s all a false argument.
    CO2 does not harm the environment. The planet benefits from CO2, plant food.

    • I think most here would agree with you Wally. But this does show, once again, the hypocrisy of the Alarmist crowd, does it not?

      • It’s not really hypocrisy – it’s more lack of critical reasoning skills. But that was already a given just by virtue of their “alarmist” beliefs.

  26. Anyone actually read the study?
    “This report also concludes that there is no fixed answer to the question of the battery’s
    environmental impact.” – Page 6, second paragraph of the study used to write this article.
    You can find it here: https://www.ivl.se/download/18.5922281715bdaebede9559/1496046218976/C243+The+life+cycle+energy+consumption+and+CO2+emissions+from+lithium+ion+batteries+.pdf
    Also, this is a “study” based on the findings of five different studies, which vary wildly in terms of expected co2 production per kwh of battery storage (based on total energy expenditure of the entire facility). The lowest being 3.1 MJ/kWh and the highest being 586 MJ/kWh. The suggestion that these can be averaged to get a correct number is ludicrous.
    The study also doesn’t directly compare the manufacturing costs in co2 or MJ/kWh to traditional battery manufacturing. This article suggests that one method of manufacturing is vastly more polluting than another, which may or may not be true, but isn’t even remotely proven by this study.

    • Okay Steve…context, yes? “This report also concludes…” –Impacts on environment in how are the batteries to be DISPOSED of, not the impacts on the environment while PRODUCING the battery–Which, clearly they state “There is, regardless, a good indication of the total emissions from the production”—a few sentences above your “gotcha” quote.
      The study clearly lists 7 organizations and institutes whereupon they relied for their resource information. By the way, the Bibliography page lists 45 different resources.
      “Traditional battery manufacturing”….you mean like the batteries in a gas or diesel powered car?–Seriously?
      So, I would like to ask you the very same question you posed but in singular fashion…Did you actually read the study? Because if you did…WOW…you missed a bunch.

  27. What counts is the total life-cycle cost to the environment. What is not mentioned in this study is the environmental burden of melting all this metal down and recycling it. That is not zero. Worse, each Tesla is financed with thousands of dollars of government money, in one form or another. Each one of those dollars came from somewhere else in the economy at some time, even if that time is in the future when the debt is finally paid. (Ha). We can divide the total tons of CO2 in the US by the total GDP and get pounds of CO2 per dollar. That cost counts in the price of each Tesla no matter how badly environmentalists don’t want to acknowledge it.

    • If you start down that route you might end up doing a cost-benefit analysis on various CO2 reduction measures, and that would be anti-science in the extreme.

  28. Another way to relate to it.., The average person’s carbon footprint is about 1,200 kg/year (my calculation… I admit there might be more precise methods but at least it’s a start). Therefore according to this article, buying a Tesla will produce 15 years of carbon emissions “up front.” Wow.

    • Wanna lower that (imaginary) “carbon footprint?” EASY-PEASY:
      Stay off airplanes. Like, permanently.
      Don’t take vacations. Recreate at home.
      Wear the clothes you’ve got. Don’t buy more.
      Grow a garden, raise chickens, go on a 1,500 calorie a day diet. Like, permanently.
      Get rid of EVERY SINGLE electric device in your home not a life necessity (Yeah, all of it.)
      Go to bed every night at dark and get up at dawn.
      Don’t commute. Work from home. See garden and chickens above.
      Take a shower twice a month, and use a composting outhouse out back to save water.
      No AC. Minimal heat in one room in the winter, “sustainable” means wood pellet stove.
      Bonus: Just solved the “obesity” problem along with global warming. /sarc.

      • You could include on your list giving up disposable diapers, feminine hygiene products, and toilet paper. A piece of cloth can sustainably substitute for all of these needs. (Yuck, no thanks.)
        Of course, having children is frowned upon.

      • Or just elect a government which encourages renewables and shuts down coal power plant… shop with companies which use renewable electricity (Walmart, IKEA).
        Germany has 32% renewable electricity and a better standard of living than most of the USA…

      • Griff,
        We did not do that and are happy for that fact.
        The Paris agreement goals are not achievable because according to the IEA Obama failed to provide sufficient renewable fuels to meet the climate goals, despite spending a trillion dollars on numerous failed, foolish projects that do not work like Solyndra and Range Fuels.
        You apparently missed reading this which was covered by WUWT.
        Even the head of the UN admits it is about wealth re-distribution, not CO 2
        Get over it

      • Griff,
        Already tried that

        Or just elect a government which encourages renewables and shuts down coal power plant… shop with companies which use renewable electricity (Walmart, IKEA)

        It was called the Obama Presidency
        Thankfully he couldn’t be reelected in 2016 and instead sanity was elected in his place

  29. While getting gas this past Sunday at a multi-pump facility, an SUV pulled up to the next pump. The passenger jumped out and headed for the Starbucks next door. Driver got out, filled the tank, washed the windows, and took the receipt.
    Just then the passenger returned with drinks and snacks. Off they went — and another vehicle replaced the SUV at that pump, one of about 24 at that plaza.
    For a large percentage of autos to be EVs, there will have to be plazas for them that will have this sort of throughput — call it the “velocity” of ‘covfefe’ or something.

    • Allegedly, with supercharging, you can charge your batteries in only one hour. Versus 5 minutes to fill up a tank.
      From this alone, you will need 12 times as many charging stations as gas pumps.

      • I think I fill up (or get enough) in less than 5 mins, in traveling in Asia where NGas is quite common, its a real pain to wait about 10-15 mins to fill up, not even counting the frequent wait to get to the pump\

      • @ scottmc37
        and how long would you have to wait (or even find) a charging station in most of Asia and then complete a charge?
        PS I live in Asia in one of the more advanced bits where charging stations are not easy to find.

    • The average car drives less than 60 miles per day, and fills up the tank once a week. Given that, an EV can be charged at home, no need to use a station. In a family with 2 cars, one could be electric (primarily for commuting), one gas (for longer trips or hauling).

      • Depends on the EV and your daily driving habits. With a Tesla you’re exactly right since the battery holds 200-300 miles per charge, all of which can be regained overnight. It’s only the road trips that are a minor inconvenience. Unless Superchargers are spaced so far apart that you need to fully recharge, it usually only takes about 15-20 minutes to charge enough to get you to the next one.
        Leafs on the other hand, with a starting range of only about 70 miles (which degrades over time) could be a hassle unless you really just don’t drive many miles per day. And road trips would be a major hassle given the short range and the slow charging.

      • You hit the nail on the head: To be able to afford a “renewable energy” production and delivery system you first need the energy system we already have; if you want an electric car, you first need a conventional car.
        By the way: Do you see how absurd calculating with averages can be?

      • @Chris
        So as has been said many times, many (most?) EVs are not peoples’ cars but their second (third,…) car.
        In your scenario you have one car (ICE) that you can use for anything and plus an EV that has limited use. And what if there are two people who need a car for commuting? Do you then need and ICE and two EVs?
        I am not against EVs per se. But the state of play at the moment (and for the next decade or so) is that there are are two options:
        – Limited range (e.g. Leaf) that is very expensive for what it is and can only be used for commuting / town driving.
        – Moderate range (e.g. Tesla) that ridiculously expensive for what it is and can only be used for long-distance travel if you plan your route carefully.

      • Chris: The average progressive tells other people how to live only a few times a day. Why does it seem like they never shut up?

  30. “emissions grow almost linearly with the size of the battery…………a result that surprised Mia Romare”
    Since large batteries are just an assembly of small cells it seems pretty obvious that manufacturing emissions will grow almost linearly with the size of the battery. It certainly shouldn’t come as a surprise to an intelligent person.

  31. These Tesla’s should be equipped with a noise generator, I had one sneak up on my yday and HONK the horn a few feet behind me, almost jumped out of my pants..

  32. Wonderful prose, Anthony. Starting the story with the word ‘Ooops’. You cannot improve on that choice. 😉

  33. That’s not why you buy an electric car. You don’t buy an electric car to SAVE the environment – it won’t. You buy an electric car for the same reasons you buy any car – to get you from one place to another.

  34. No shit? Did you think electric cars would cost more because they use less resources? You can not disobey physics, but there are some economic laws you can’t beat either 😉

  35. Owen in GA commented: “…They already have that covered. Place a GPS tracker in each car and send them a bill for the miles traveled each month.
    Think about that statement. Fossil fuels are the most heavily taxed by Western governments of any commodities. Transfer ALL that tax to cars by the mile and the economics of driving a personal vehicle would collapse.

    • …And I’m sure everyone would love to have a tracker tattling their movements to the state. Since it’s to do with tax revenue, you can bet the penalty for tampering with such a tracker would be a six figure fine and about ten years of prison time.

      • I think Oregon was the first state to test this technology.
        -First all the volunteer testers loved it, what a surprise considering only those who where for this ability to begin with tested it.
        -Second, the state has assured us that if this becomes law they will not be storing any of the GPS data and it will be dumped ASAP. Of course we do have public records laws mandating the state keep all information. To avoid public record laws they were talking about having the gas station pump talk to your GPS, calculate the tax and add it to your fuel bill on the spot. That’s going to increase the cost of doing business to the gas stations and increase our out of pocket for gas as they have to raise rates. The road mile tax would also have to be front loaded onto your bill for those paying in case and only wanting $20 in gas. Heck, those scrounging up quarters to buy enough gas to make to their next pay check could end up paying all road tax and not having money left over for gas with this system.
        -Last of all they are lying about the proposed tax per mile tax rate. By their numbers and doing the math, vehicles that get under 30mpg will end up paying less taxes when substituting per mile tax vs per gallon tax then they currently do. Any Vegas odds on a state letting “gas hogs” get away with paying less tax then they currently do?
        Oh yeah, I almost forgot that it will cost ~$600/vehicle to buy the hardware to do this. No estimate on how much it will cost you to install it. If they give us a tax break equal to the cost of installation they’ll blow the states budget for road works for years. If they don’t give us a tax break that’s one heck of a tax hike.

  36. This is good to know, realize, and make fun of but in a totally fair comparison, you have to include emissions for engine production and operation and maintenance (electric and gas) also emissions for producing gasoline (from well to pump).

  37. One very important aspect yet to be mentioned is that the US and many other countries have an extensive gas and diesel distribution system that allows driving almost every where in the country with the confidence of refueling. This was built with private money and will involve enormas cost to duplicate for electric cars. Of course Musk and others think the taxpayer should build it.
    How many years will it take to replace our refueling system.
    Of course this is never mentioned or discussed by the advocates.

      • So when will Norway be completely covered with stations and who is paying for it.
        Norway is a beautiful country with lots of back roads to less populated areas, at least when I traveled there. It is also blessed with fossil fuels in abundance that has helped the economy considerably over the years.possibly paying for these charging stations?
        What do you think the cost would be to replicate the gasoline and diesel distribution in the US INCLUDING UPGRADES to the electrical supply system?
        Will Tesla pay for it?

  38. Tesla gets about $7500 per car on the federal subside, Kalifornia has unbelievable corporate welfare perks in the pot for Tesla as well. Stock around 370, up 50% since DJT election, clearly no worries about Paris exit or serious EPA climate scam reforms that “emissions” tripe are linked to.
    Their official reply to this article would go something like this;
    Their response to article

  39. In Norway, almost all electrical production is comming from hydro power plants (135 TWh/yr) and almost 50 percent of all cars sold i 2017 is expected to be an electric or hybrid. I drive an electric car myself and I’m very happy with the overall experience. My fuel cost has been cut from about 10 NOK/10 km to 1 NOK/10km.
    EV stats for Norway:

  40. In Norway, almost all electrical production is comming from hydro power plants (135 TWh/yr) and almost 50 percent of all cars sold i 2017 is expected to be an electric or hybrid. I drive an electric car myself and I’m very happy with the overall experience. My fuel cost has been cut from about 10 NOK/10 km to 1 NOK/10km.
    EV stats for Norway:

  41. I use the electric car scheme here in Paris because 1) you are guaranteed a parking space, a true luxury in this overcrowded city; 2) it’s a handy backup for when my car is off the road – clutch wore out last week; 3) I get something back on my taxes; the scheme is highly subsidized; 3) there is some sort of trick which ensures the radio is always tuned to my favorite station; 4) also I love CO2, so good to hear I’m contributing more to the atmosphere by using the service.

  42. A Tesla model X costs 5.8 cents per km to run based on charging the battery at a home supply @ 25 cents per kWh (Australia).
    A Kia Optima costs 10.6 cents per km based on RON 91 fuel at 135 cents per litre (Australia)
    Since the Tesla costs $100,000 more than the Kia to buy it would take about 13 years to break even.
    Who keeps their car for 13 years or more before trading in?

    • You get 13x the fun driving the Tesla. Those things are fast! Besides trying to justify an exotic sports car purchase economically never works.. try the same comparison with any performance/luxury ICE car and it will take longer than 13 years.. but they still sell.
      I am a motorhead, love anything motor powered, cars, motorbikes, snowmobiles etc. Recently I have been playing around with electric vehicles and I am hooked. Not because of love for the planet (I am happy to hear battery production also produces CO2!) but because of the instant torque.
      I built my own electric powered fat tire mountain bike. So much fun! I test rode a Zero motorcycle and the quiet linear acceleration is addicting. I also like the fact that I don’t need to re-map the FI, adjust the valves, change the oil etc. Too expensive new though so I am watching the used section..
      I am now also shopping for a used Spark EV or Volt. The prices are low enough on used EV’s that I can find an EV with similar miles for similar cash to ICE. However the drive is quiet and smooth and the acceleration is enjoyable. An overnight charge is enough to get me through my ~40 miles of daily activities too.. as a bonus.
      So you can hate on electric, love it, argue back and forth about the economics, but in the end the performance and maintenance advantages of electric are enough for some people. I could care less how much or little CO2 they produce.I am more interested in how much torque the produce.
      I do wish the cars weren’t subsidized. Let them duke it out in the market with the other products and stand or fail on their own. Not much I can do about that except to keep voting the right people in..

      • I’m with you in loving anything tech if it does something radically better. I tried a Segway for the 1st this year. Wow! Brilliant fun, I had to ask the guy running the tour how come we weren’t all on them for commuting short distances. Answer: they are illegal here on roads or footpaths! As are all ‘hoverboards’ and most electric bikes.
        You can only use them off your own land to participate in guided, authorised (read ‘licenced by government’) tours along predefined routes.
        Government needs to quit doing subsidies and over-zealous regulation and start joining the dots to see the big picture.
        We’ll know EVs are ready for the mainstream when F1 and IndyCar are pushing to use them. It will come, but not without solving the current energy crisis (to burn or go nuke). And in those timescales, I suspect the growth potential of the Tesla market will be overtaken by person-carrying drones. The poor government regulators will be having kittens but I don’t care what laws there are, once electric motors and batteries can lift 100kg for 20 minutes using a backpack drone, I’m going to be using it to commute to work and generally have a blast.

        • “…We’ll know EVs are ready for the mainstream when F1 and IndyCar are pushing to use them….” There’s already an EV circuit for F1/Indy type cars.

  43. Reading their assumptions for gasoline/diesel cars it seems to me they’ve simply taken the manufacturer (read the NEDC) emissions label number. Which will be completely wrong. Unless of course new cars in Sweden really do average 50-55 MPG (1 gallon of diesel for 55 miles = 135 g CO2/km). Given the climate there I would suggest this is far fetched.

    • The Tesla Model S P85D, a dual motor all-wheel drive vehicle has a governed top speed of 155 mph (250 km/h) and it accelerates from 0 to 60 miles per hour (0 to 97 km/h) in 3.2 seconds (tested to 3.1 seconds), under “Insane Mode”, with 1g of acceleration.

      • Griff
        So what the recent Corvette goes from 0 to 60 in under 3 seconds and looks better.

      • David
        97 km/h is about 27 m/s.
        Three seconds at 1g (10 m/s^2) would take you to 30m/s.
        Therefore 0-97 kmh in 3.1 seconds while impressive, is slightly less than 1g.
        3g would take you from 0-97 in one second.

      • You are assuming a constant acceleration…. May be a reasonable assumption, but probably not (I guess the electric car could run in a vacuum….). The peak acceleration is just after the start, and is related to tires/surface friction as well other factors The RATE of acceleration is negative after the first half second.

      • And the new Tesla P100D goes 0 – 60 in 2.3 seconds. (Ludicrous mode)

        Tesla Model S P100D does it best, reaching 30, 40, 50, and 60 mph from a standstill more quickly than any other production vehicle we’ve ever tested, full stop. In our testing, no production car has ever cracked 2.3 seconds from 0 to 60 mph. But Tesla has, in 2.275507139 seconds.

        Problem is, With a Vette, if you run out of gas you can push it to the gas station accross the street.
        While, If your Tesla runs out of power (total depletion) 20 feet from the plug, you have a brick until the tow truck gets there and drags you to the plug.

  44. Surely the issue here is not the comparison between E.V and I.C.E for how good they compare for Co2 emissions. Those of us sceptical enough, don’t consider Co2 to be a dangerous gas. The claim to glory for Tesla etc is how Co2 clean they are. It’s a non issue to begin with. Even if I.C.E
    . vehicles do produce more Co2, big deal. The point is, the false and misleading claim that E.V.s do not produce Co2. It’s their bogey man. Tesla does not deal with their problem.

  45. I’m “Killing the Planet” By driving, infrequently, a “Gas-Guzzling” 1999 Audi A8 with 345,000 miles on it. How much ‘Carbon’ would replacing it 3 times have put into the climate system?

  46. Just ran a quick calculation: that 5.3 to 17.5 tons of CO2 corresponds to the CO2 emissions of a gasoline-fueled vehicle getting 30 miles per gallon driving 17,000 to 56,000 miles.

  47. Is there a second hand market for EVs that are 5 … 6years old? The soon to be need of an extremely expensive battery should make an used EV essentially worthless. The only solution would be EVs where you lease the battery.

    • There is a used market and yes because of lots of mis-information there are some screaming deals.
      The Leaf had some range degradation issues in hotter climates because they use an air-cooled battery. However GM over engineered the Volt battery with liquid cooling and have not had a single warranty claim for battery range degradation. People with 150k miles are still claiming the same battery range as when new.
      Most people however assume that the battery in their iPhone is the same as the battery in the car. While it is similar, GM uses sophisticated battery management to keep it in the right temp and charge range. If you keep a LiOn battery between 20%-80% charge it will last much longer than when it is constantly fully depleted and fully charged as we do with our phones.
      There is no motivation for Apply to implement battery management either because of planned obsolescence. Apply wants to sell you a new phone every couple years. Unfortunately that is most peoples experience with Lithium batteries and they assume the same.
      In autos they have an 8 year 100k miles warranty to worry about so they make sure it lasts at least that. Real world data is showing even more.
      I am a full on skeptic/denier/heathen whatever denigrating name the liberals attach, but I like technology. It is unfortunate that battery technology has received so many subsidies at the cost of the tax payer. But it has and we can’t put that genie back in the bottle. The upside is that those advances have enabled some cool products.
      I say have an open mind and go test drive an EV just for fun. I think you’ll be surprised.

  48. Anyone else bother to read the report? It’s 150-200 kilograms per kw/hr, not kilos. Author’s math is off a few decimal places.

  49. I am waiting to replace my 1999 Subaru Outback with a dual powered (solar/wind) car. Meanwhile, I am going to trade in the 2007 Subaru Forester on a new car (lease) for my wife so I can take over the 2011 Toyota Highlander (with less than 50k miles).
    Electric cars are a bigger scam than AGW.

  50. At least the CO@ is generated in the factory only, so schemes to capture the CO2 from a single source can be developed.
    Alas, man-made CO2 is not the culprit of Global Warming.

  51. I can’t find the transcript but this story and “Watts Up With That” were mentioned on the Russ Limbaugh show today.

  52. So after 8 years then it is more efficient than a gasoline vehicle..I drive a Prius, this same illogical analysis was once used by Hummer comparing battery pollution when being Mfg. 12 years later my Prius is still going on the same batteries…Based on this can I now say I drive a near zero emission car and a gasoline vehicle 12 years old is just that, a polluting, gas guzzling vehicle..

    • It’s only near zero emissions if the electricity you charge it with is near zero emissions. 8 year battery life is quite impressive though. Do you still get the same performance from them?

  53. 1500 miles of driving a 21 mpg car results in 9.9 tons of emissions. This means that in 2 months of 1500 mile driving, 19.8 tons are produced. Author says it takes not more than 17.5 tons to manufacture the batteries and maybe the car too. It wasn’t clear. That means in just over 2 months, the car has nearly covered the co2 needed to produce it. If you only drive 12,000 miles per year, figure 4-5 months. No big deal. Simple math. Google it with a co2 calculator to double check my math. Easy. But, Co2 emissions don’t hurt the environment. Diesel and coal do. If solar or hydro powered the factory, there would be no co2 emissions anyway.

    • Your math is off. About 20lb of CO2 are emitted for a gallon of gasoline. It would take about 71 gal of gasoline for a car to travel 1500 miles @ 21 mpg.

  54. On another web site I found this link to the original study.
    The study and all the articles about it are completely different. In the original study they looked at multiple studies to involving Battery CO2 emissions and used that information to calculate likely ranges for manufacturing, charging, recycling and other batter related CO2 emission. The study never compared their calculated CO2 emissions to cars and never mentioned Diesel, gas, bio fuels or fuel efficiency.
    I think someone wrote an article listing their negative opinion of batteries and then referenced to an obscure hard to find study to make their claims look legitimate. In short face news.
    Looking at the ranges of CO2 emissions the report lists the CO2 emissions are likely less than 800Kg CO2 per Kilowatt of battery capacity. Much less than what a Diesel or gas car will produce in less than 1 year of operation. The study appears to conclude the opposite of what all the articles claim.

  55. If my logic is correct, you have to compare the CO2 released from the production of the combustion engine and related parts of a car of certain horse power to the amount of CO2 released from the production of a battery of similar horsepower and related parts. If they are the same, then the combustion car would then still have to burn gasoline as fuel, while the battery would not.

    • Compare:
      manufacture of combustion engine vs. electric motor
      energy in gasoline/diesel vs. energy in battery
      manufacture of gas tank vs. Li-ion battery
      CO2 emission of gasoline/diesel burning vs. grid electricity (partly coal burning)
      coal emits 50% more CO2 than diesel
      diesel car win
      Electric car is heavier (more material) than gasoline car. The body of Lotus Exige and Tesla Roadster are the same but Tesla is 400 kg heavier due to its battery. Lotus = 900 kg. Tesla = 1300 kg

  56. “It posits that production of a 100 kWh battery—Tesla’s biggest—produces 17.5 tons of carbon dioxide.”.
    The Tesla has 9,600 batteries. So this hit piece of pure BS states every Li cell required 4lbs of CO2 to make it. That’s a crap load of energy just for a roll of Al, Cu with a C layer, P.E.T foils and a minuscule wetting of a Lithium salted solvent.
    In fact its complete BS. This blog should be ashamed by feeding trolls. Every one of them have to drive 500+ miles continuously and only need to stop for a 2 minute fill up while pissing on the side of their car. While imagining car engines, fuel and oil come like rain. And Oil refineries do not have to be built next to power stations because they consume so much energy.
    The writing is on the wall for steam carriages.
    NIO EP9 Electric Supercar Breaks Nurburgring Lap Record – Full Onboard – 06:45:90

    • “That’s a crap load of energy just for a roll of Al, Cu with a C layer, P.E.T foils and a minuscule wetting of a Lithium salted solvent.”
      That Al, Cu and Li come with a ton of rock in the mines to be blasted with explosives, shoveled by heavy eqpt, transported by huge dump truck, crushed in milling plant, then you separate and melt the metals.
      “NIO EP9 Electric Supercar Breaks Nurburgring Lap Record”
      LOL That electric supercar can’t even finish the Indy 500. Its battery will conk out after 265 miles. It can’t even beat this old 1927 Sunbeam car that exceeded 200 mph. The electric supercar’s top speed is 194 mph

  57. EVs have advantages over ICE cars that can’t be denied. They are quieter (inside and out), smoother, quicker on average, roomier than equivalent external dimension ICE car, emission free at usage point, regen braking makes them easier to drive once you get the hang of it (you can one pedal drive), low center of gravity makes them more stable/better handling, more convenient if you can charge overnight, and less maintenance. If you can fit within the range and charge criteria and afford them they are a superior mode of transportation to an ICE car. Meeting that criteria makes them a niche vehicle though and until we run out of oil ICE will remain king as they have fewer drawbacks for more people. In some cases EVs will never fit in unless the current top range can be tripled and charge time reduced many, many times over. Think of just the noise and emission reduction in New York City or Tokyo if only EVs were allowed. Then think of the charging nightmare for all those vehicles if that actually ever happened.

  58. @pkudude99
    “TL;DW —
    Manufacturing an EV including batteries – 25 tons CO2, Manufacturing an ICEV – 16 tons CO2”
    Wrong. Those who watched the video both hear Lomborg say “25,000 lbs / 16,000 lbs CO2” and saw it on the screen. 1000 lbs is NOT equal to 1 ton.

Comments are closed.