Getting behind the wheel of latest electrical autos has change into a signature transfer for self-proclaimed “automobile man” President Joe Biden. However his alternative of automobile has some local weather advocates hitting the brakes.
These EVs have one massive factor in widespread: their batteries.
The Ford Lightning’s battery weighs 1,800 kilos, whereas the Hummer EV’s 2,923-pound battery alone weighs extra than a gasoline-powered Honda Civic. And that additional weight comes with some damaging penalties.
For starters, heavier automobiles imply extra put on and tear on roads. The pinnacle of the Nationwide Transportation Security Board has additionally warned that massive EVs just like the Hummer might improve the danger of significant harm or loss of life for pedestrians and different drivers after they’re in accidents.
Then there are the local weather issues. Larger batteries require a number of important minerals, which, for probably the most half, are extracted utilizing fossil gas energy. It additionally takes much more electrical energy to energy these automobiles, and the electrical grid nonetheless depends closely on fossil fuels.
So whereas the Hummer EV might change into higher for the local weather when extra renewables come on-line, for now, it emits extra carbon per mile than probably the most environment friendly gasoline-powered automobiles.
All these components have led some local weather advocates to name on the Biden administration and automakers to construct and promote smaller EVs. However others wish to see federal funding go towards one other neglected local weather resolution: public transit.