Chevrolet EN-V concept, 2011. A 2-seat urban electric prototype jointly developed by Segway and GM that can be driven normally or operated autonomously. EN-V is an abbreviation of Electric Networked-Vehicle
We’ve said it before on this blog. Those electric cars that are supposedly helping save the environment pollute more than gasoline powered vehicles.
The study, by the National Bureau of Economic Research, looked at five major pollutants: carbon (CO2), sulphur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen (NOx), particulate matter (PM 2.5), and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). They took into account 11 different 2014 models of EVs, as well as the ‘closest substitute’ gas car.
For gas cars, the researchers studying the car’s fuel-efficiency rating, the average wind patterns in an area and other environmental factors, such as farmland.
This provided researchers with the total emissions of driving a certain gas car one mile in a given U.S. county.
For EVs, researchers analysed at how much electricity each car drew from a regional grid and the hourly emissions profiles for the five pollutants at 1,486 power plants across the U.S.
This gave them a figure for the amount of environmental damage that car produced at the power plant, according to a report in CityLab.
Overall the results showed that the west of the US is a lot cleaner than the east when it comes to driving EVs.
In monetary terms, electric cars are about half-a-cent worse per mile for the environment than gas-powered cars.
With gas cars, the worst damage, which is shown on the map in red, took place in highly-populated urban areas such as New York.
Environmental damage for EVs appears to be worse in the Midwest and Northeast, where the electricity grid tends to rely on coal power plants. In places like LA, EVs produce less environmental damage because the city’s air shed traps pollutants from gas cars.
Here, electric cars are 3.3 cents per mile better for the environment than gas-powered vehicles. Outside of populated areas, electric cars are generally 1.5 cents per mile worse than gas-powered.
The federal government currently pays $7,500 for every electric car purchased — a subsidy that the study authors say the US should scrap.
As JWF notes, the science on this is settled. So stop denying science, you crazy science denier.