top of page
  • primology4

The "EV" Conundrum...To Charge or Not To Charge

Let's start with a list of the current talking points we see everyday coming from the current Federal government administration. These talking points are all denoted in a positive manner and seldom, if ever, noting the negative side of owning and driving an EV. So, the question is "Is our current Love Affair with EVs a True Love? Let's see.




  • Environmental benefits: EVs produce zero tailpipe emissions, which helps to improve air quality and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. This is important for addressing climate change and protecting public health.

  • Economic benefits: The transition to EVs can create jobs in the manufacturing, sales, and service of EVs and EV charging infrastructure. It can also reduce the USA's dependence on foreign oil.

  • Energy security benefits: EVs can help to reduce the USA's reliance on fossil fuels, which can make the country more energy secure.

  • Public health benefits: EVs can help to improve public health by reducing air pollution. Air pollution is linked to a number of health problems, including asthma, heart disease, and cancer.

  • Performance benefits: EVs offer a number of performance advantages over ICE vehicles, including better acceleration and handling.

  • Consumer benefits: EVs can save consumers money on fuel and maintenance costs. EVs are also becoming more affordable, and the charging infrastructure is improving.

Let me take each one of these and provide a "Food For Thought" comment.


Environmental Benefits: First, of course EVs have zero tailpipe emissions, since they don't have a tailpipe! The promoters of this 'environmental' benefit compare the EV's zero tailpipe emissions to an internal combustion engine (ICE) that obviously does have a tailpipe and then claim a superior environmental advantage. (Note: The EPA recently changed one of the measurements used to regulate automaker's fleets is "tail pipe emissions...putting ICE's at significant disadvantage in the marketplace and eventually regulating them out of existence. Did you vote for that? I didn't.) What they refuse to consistently do is to consider the full course of the production of the EV which includes sourcing all the materials required to make the most expensive part of the vehicle, the battery. Those materials are mostly "rare earth' materials, (very finite supply) most generally sourced from the less developed parts of the world and done in a grossly negligent manner in the exploitation of the local populations around those mines, including the use of children. Not counting the human cost, but the cost to the environment, this changes the calculus of the entire argument. (See: Washington Post - EV Supply Chains Have A Human Rights Problem)



Economic Benefits: The transition "can" create jobs, etc. Lot's can be said for this 'benefit' but let's leave it at this: How many jobs will be lost when all those men and women who have significant expertise in the manufacture and production of our gas powered cars are no longer needed? Far fewer workers are needed to put together a battery and a shell. The automaker unions are already grappling with that issue.


Energy Security Benefits: The USA has a greater supply of energy (even excluding coal) than nearly any country in the world. Energy 'security' does not seem such a priority that we should almost overnight shift to an unknown industry, especially a shift not driven by market forces of natural supply and demand but forced by the dictates of an increasingly authoritarian government.


Public Healthy Benefits: It's a given that pollution is a huge problem in our world but I would note the huge advances made in cleaner, more efficient auto engines over the past decades as well as overall pollution sources. I would suggest a sober look at the overall costs of such massive change in such a short period of time in light of the tremendous progress we've made and the progress is going in the right direction. Just saying.....



Performance Benefits: Really??? So I'm supposed to thank Wash DC for the 'benefit' of being forced to by a 'zero tail pipe emission' car for $15,000 more than a comparable ICE car, that goes approx. half as far as my ICE car, takes hours to "fill up", requires expensive additions to my garage in order to "fill up", that is a rare but serious fire hazard, etc, etc, etc, JUST so I can go faster??? Just so I can go from 0 to 60 in 3 seconds rather than 4 seconds? Really?



Consumer Benefits: There are volumes of articles discussion the relative costs of the EV vs. ICE. So far it appears the consensus is that EVs are slightly less costly in the long run. Do those costs savings outweigh the downsides as well as already mentioned, the massive overnight shift to electrification? Range anxiety, charging times and challenges, initial upfront costs, etc? Here is an article that does a balanced job of breaking down in detail a reasonable comparison:

(I did question their Depreciation analysis as I didn't see any discussion of the possible need to replace the most expensive part of the EV, the battery.)


I'll finish with a few other observations and concerns I have about making the move to an EV.

If I run out of "fuel' how do I get charged? Will AAA bring a generator out to me? I assume I'm going to need a tow truck to get me back home to my charger. And then it will be an overnight, maybe two nights to get a full charge.

Is an EV a logical choice for me if I live in an apartment or condo? I'll always have to 'fast charge' somewhere and if one reads the fine print in the owner's manual, they would see a caution to use 'fast chargers' sparingly as this degrades the battery faster.


Is an EV the right choice if I live outside the city, in a rural area?

Is an EV the right choice if I trailer heavy loads since this causes a much greater load on the battery, significantly reducing my range?


Again, I'm just saying! I'm sure you have some thoughts on this subject. Do know I'm all in on keeping our environment clean and conservation of resources. I just don't believe that at this point the massive campaign to transition to all electric is a well thought out policy. It seems purely political to me.


What do you think? Is the purchase of an EV an addition to your Asset Garden or should it be looked at more like a potential weed???

4 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Comments


bottom of page