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How green is that electric car?

Comments

  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 17,190
    Thanks for that! The study really shouldn't surprise anyone, though...
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • SuperJ
    SuperJ Member Posts: 605
    edited April 2019
    It's a lesson in that you can't consume your way to sustainability, and driving what you already own as long as possible is probably the greenest option. Buying a new car is likely never the earth friendly option.

    At this point it seems like you can make the stats support your side/politics. But I think this one is stacked against the EV.

    The 150,000km life cycle (93,000miles) assumption is suspiciously close to the crossover over point where the EV comes out ahead. Here in North America most vehicles are used well beyond that. Also, the most carbon intensive component (the battery) has a long useful second life in a less demanding static application as a grid tied battery.

    Also, of interest would be a smaller battery EV, and a less carbon based electric grid (Germany relies on coal and NG pretty heavily). And the fuel consumption figures are based on the wildly optimistic Euro numbers, the real world consumption would make the diesel and NG cars look much worse.

    I bet the real world crossover point is closer to 30-60k miles, depending on local electrical grid composition.
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 17,190
    @SuperJ -- nice try. Though you are correct in that the cost crossover point is critically dependent on what grid you are tied to -- cheap electricity it comes quicker, obviously. The carbon crossover point, however, and environmental damage crossover, less so. While there are some local areas which have very low carbon grids -- Quebec, for instance, and increasingly southern California -- one must take into account both the environmental damage from those grids, which can be extensive, and the social damage, which for at least some local communities in Quebec has come pretty close to genocide by another name. Most other areas are more like Germany.

    What is notable is that a good alternative wasn't tested: hybrids, which use a much smaller battery. It would be interesting to see how they stack up.

    Mind you, I am not opposed to straight electric vehicles. In some applications, particularly urban/suburban settings, they have a number of real advantages so that even if their carbon and environmental comparisons aren't quite as glowing as their advocates would have you believe, they are a very good choice. They are no panacea, however, and in some applications they are, in fact, an exceedingly poor choice.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    STEVEusaPA
  • SuperJ
    SuperJ Member Posts: 605
    I think we're kicking around the same facts with slightly different, but not opposing conclusions.

    I'm just frustrated by hyper polarized arguments by both sides that tend to take some liberties by assuming the best or worst selectively to build up or break down competing ideologies.

    I don't currently have a horse in this race, as I currently drive a Subaru Outback and and a Acura MDX (both are ashamedly fuel pigs). But I do think I'll look at some sort of plug-in hybrid the next time around, to at least of the option of plugin in for local driving. I had a leased Chevy Volt for my work car for a year in the past that I quite enjoyed.

    If anything it's close enough to a wash to say, maybe we should be actively looking at some alternatives to the status quo.

    The Dodge E-Torque system is a good example of progress that few people would argue with. https://autoweek.com/article/technology/2019-ram-etorque-system-torque-down-low
  • DJDrew
    DJDrew Member Posts: 61
    May not be the most green, but it is certainly a way to skirt the gas taxes if you have reasonable electric rates! Green in the wallet?
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 5,338
    DJDrew said:

    May not be the most green, but it is certainly a way to skirt the gas taxes if you have reasonable electric rates! Green in the wallet?

    Oh don't think you'll get away with that.
    Motor Fuel taxes make up a tremendous amount of income for most DOT's. As electrics and hybrids get more popular, and the DOT's revenue declines, they'll figure out another way to get into your wallet, probably charge you a fee based on your mileage when you renew the registration.
    steve
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,985

    DJDrew said:

    May not be the most green, but it is certainly a way to skirt the gas taxes if you have reasonable electric rates! Green in the wallet?

    Oh don't think you'll get away with that.
    Motor Fuel taxes make up a tremendous amount of income for most DOT's. As electrics and hybrids get more popular, and the DOT's revenue declines, they'll figure out another way to get into your wallet, probably charge you a fee based on your mileage when you renew the registration.
    States are already looking on ways to fix the problem.


    https://www.charlottestories.com/new-nc-bill-would-require-hybrid-owners-to-pay-extra-fees-to-offset-gas-they-dont-use/?fbclid=IwAR17t85y8K12cbJmUVveB4rUGfUAWyAoFx_Cl4aqQHupz6kPf9JwqtBN_as

    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • Leonard
    Leonard Member Posts: 903
    edited April 2019
    Here in NH ~ 45 years ago after arab oil embargo USA was testing compressed nat gas fueled cars. The state DOT had a form where had to state total miles driven per year and calculate how much you owe the state for fuel taxes that would have been paid if you had otherwise bought gasoline/diesel in a regular gas station.

    Don't fill it out and pay then you don;t get your car registration plates you need to drive on public roads.

    Think they had something similar for electric cars, way back then.
  • Jean-David Beyer
    Jean-David Beyer Member Posts: 2,666
    If you have the "right size" battery and the "correct" driving pattern, you should be able to charge your car battery from solar. I have a friend who "keeps vampire hours"; she typically sleeps 8AM to 4PM and works at night (professional musician). If your employer put in solar outlets in their parking lots, this might work too.
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,985

    If you have the "right size" battery and the "correct" driving pattern, you should be able to charge your car battery from solar. I have a friend who "keeps vampire hours"; she typically sleeps 8AM to 4PM and works at night (professional musician). If your employer put in solar outlets in their parking lots, this might work too.

    What about when it's cloudy?
    Winter?
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 17,190
    ChrisJ said:

    If you have the "right size" battery and the "correct" driving pattern, you should be able to charge your car battery from solar. I have a friend who "keeps vampire hours"; she typically sleeps 8AM to 4PM and works at night (professional musician). If your employer put in solar outlets in their parking lots, this might work too.

    What about when it's cloudy?
    Winter?
    All quite true.. But @Jean-David Beyer , those and @ChrisJ 's questions are the jokers in the deck. There are, indeed, places and work patterns and jobs where a Tesla 3 -- at 40K plus dollars a whack, plus the chargers -- will fit the bill very nicely indeed. As it happens, I -- retired -- am in a position where I could use really truly green transportation (one of my shires and a cart) for everything I do, if I weren't terrified of the idiots on the highway. What's the point? One size does not fit all. No matter how enthusiastic the advocates of this or that are, there needs to be flexibility to fit the needs of a wide variety of people and places and occupations. As it happens, my dentist drives a Tesla (he can afford it!) and does use solar charging. I drive an elderly Chevy K2500. Both suit what we need to do when we need to do it.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    CLamb
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 11,985
    I drive a $14,000 2019 Hyundia Accent with 6spd manual.
    I average 45 MPG and drive 21,000 miles per year to work.

    Not sure I can be much more cost effective.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • nicholas bonham-carter
    nicholas bonham-carter Member Posts: 8,517
    edited April 2019
    EthicalPaul takes the cake with his Honda Insight Hybrid radiator mover!

    https://us.v-cdn.net/5021738/uploads/editor/xy/7bbpsvb8sn5o.png
  • mikeg2015
    mikeg2015 Member Posts: 1,183
    Doesn’t surprise me. Wonder if you compare the total lifecycle of a cast iron boiler with a 30-50 year life and a 20 year HE furnace or condensing boiler. I’ve seen several Burnham boilers from 1960 that have original cast iron burners that look practically new. No leaks at all on closed hot water system. The same houses that had forced air installed would typically be on their 3rd furnace by now. That 3 electric motors, blowers assemblies, inducer, heat exchangers.

    Same with old windows. Rip out a 100 year old wood sash that you could strip and rebuild for another 500 years, and put in a vinyl and aluminum window that might last 30-40 years at most then it goes to a landfill. Or instead install an aluminum frame storm window that will probably last 70+ years and get a system nearly as effecient.
    DJDrew