Pros, advantages, the good stuff of Electric Cars

Posted by at 9 June 2014, at 15 : 14 PM

Pros, advantages, the good stuff of Electric Cars

There are a range of pros and cons to buying an electric car. Electric cars are better for the environment than conventional vehicles.

Electric cars have the potential to be completely emission free and sustainable – if we all switched to electrical transport tomorrow (assuming the technology and infrastructure was ready) we could cut global emissions by 20%.

If an electric car’s batteries are re-charged from a renewable power source and the car is made in a sustainable way with recycled materials, then the electric car is a sustainable form of transport – a statement you can never make about any oil derived engine.

In this article, we’re going to write about the pros of Electric Cars

The Pros of electric cars are all about the environment at the moment, emissions, recycling, noise etc. There are some elements which are more cost effective then regular transport and it is this aspect which should come to the forefront as the technology and market matures. Electric cars are good and this is why…

Zero Emissions – electric cars produce zero CO2 emissions when running, they don’t emit nitrous oxide or other particle emissions either. They’re not counting grams coming out of their tailpipes… they’re cars don’t even HAVE tailpipes! Regular fossil-fuelled road transportation is widely cited as being responsible for around a fifth of all global greenhouse gas emissions.

Fuel Costs – a full tank of fuel, namely a fully charged battery will cost not much more than a pint of milk.

Recyclable – many electric car designers e.g. Stevens are looking at the full life cycle of design and manufacture and it’s impact on the environment. So they ensure that not only are their cars highly recyclable, they’re also often actually made from recycled material.

Energy Efficiency – the trouble with conventional combustion engines (i.e. petrol, diesel, veg oil, etc) is that they’re horribly in-efficient – as much as 80% of the energy produced when the oil is burned is lost as heat! That means for every £ or $ worth of gas you use, you’re throwing away 80p (or cents) of it!! Sure there is still loss in an electrical engine too – but it’s more like 10 or perhaps 20% loss. Given this one single fact it actually seems pretty amazing that electric cars lost out to oil based engines all those years ago.

Noise – electric cars are quiet, very quiet. In fact in Japan, they are having to introduce artificial noises to ensure those with visual impairments can hear the cars.

Renewable Energy – obviously electric cars are only ‘actually’ zero emission if they derive their electrical power from a renewable source – that is, if you charge your battery up at your house and your house is powered from a coal power station, then the end result is still emissions – however, as discussed already, electric engines are way more efficient, so even if charging the batteries from non-renewable sources, an electric car can still result in halving the amount of CO2 than that produced by a conventional engine. The real potential will be realised when electric cars are coupled with renewable power generation.

Health – emissions from the combustion of diesel and petrol (carbon-based fuels) which power road vehicles (cars, lorries, vans, motorbike) create a pretty nasty mix of exhaust fumes which contain: carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide, sulphur dioxide, suspended particles, PM-10 particles less than 10 microns in size, benzene, formaldehyde, polycyclic hydrocarbons. Although conventional fuels have been cleaned up, for example, in the UK with widespread ban on leaded petrol they still contain a range of chemicals which are less than good for the environment or human health. Electric cars produce none of these.

Savings – finally there are those financial incentives: no congestion charge in London, free or discounted parking in many places, no road tax, free charging bays in selected cities.

In summary – electric cars are great for regular, local trips <40 miles if you have access to easy / free power. Good cost savings after the initial purchase and good, very good for the environment.

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