The Word about Electric Cars

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It seems that many manufacturers are looking at electric cars to save the car industry, but what do the people who drive vehicles say about it? Does it look like a viable option?

Here are the pluses and minuses according to Debate.org.

PLUSES

It seems to be relatively cheaper to charge a car than to fill up a tank of gas. An average tank of gas costs $45 but an electric car takes $10 to charge.

Operating an EV puts out no toxic engine toxins emissions which improves are quality—an environmental plus.

Apparently electric cars look better than gas powered cars. This must be taken with a grain of salt based upon the particular audience polled for this debate It’s surely possible to make gas powered cars look as good as the electric version, but one can certainly observe that the intent of manufacturers to create a certain aesthetic.

Because there isn’t engine noise, EVs don’t create noise pollution.

Some believe that environmental practices need to change across the board and starting anywhere is a first step to a better world. That putting the cart before the horse for a time is okay because the horse will catch up eventually.

MINUSES

It is probably unlikely that electric vehicles will stop pollution as the electricity needs to come from somewhere. Many people acknowledge that you are just changing what you’re contaminating the environment with.

They also have a greater risk of breaking down in the middle of the street. This means the national transportation grid is weaker by the amount of EVs on the road. What is the cost financially and environmentally for having to roll more tow trucks out each day? No one knows because it’s not PC to ask.

Another uncomfortable truth is that it takes from thirty minutes to eight hours to charge the car up. This is all right if you want to use the car just to head out to the work; it’s not quite so good if you want to use the car throughout the day.

On the topic of refuelling–there currently isn’t an extensive infrastructure to support refuelling. In order to overcome the time factor, many grocery stores are creating charging stations so you can refuel while the car would be sitting idle anyway. This begs the question, how are state and local governments going to recoup the road tax on these vehicles?

EVs have a limited range. So do ICE cars. But with the time to refuel it’s more of an issue to run out. Also you can’t walk to the closest station and bring some electricity back with you. You essentially turn every out of gas experience into a costly tow.

Many people feel that “green washing” draws money and focus away from really dealing with transportation issues on a larger scale.

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The result of the Debate.org’s poll was 65% of people were pro electric cars, while 35% of people were against them. As Jack Gillis of the Washington Post experimented with owning and operating an EV and concluded that, though there was a significant tax advantage to buying an EV they weren’t more intrinsically cost effective. Once Congress discontinues the tax incentives the market could vanish. The real answer is to create a sustainable market for EVs but it’s difficult to manufacture consumer demand. It’s also likely that oil companies will mettle with any attempt get this industry to function on its own.

But whether you back the gas side or the electric side things do seem to be up in the air at the moment. So what about the best of both worlds, the hybrid?

The hybrid’s ability to generate it’s own electricity unchains it from the long charge time and short range. It takes the need for a tow back to normal levels. It does away with the short mileage issues and you won’t need to create an entire special infrastructure to accommodate its need to charge. Then again if you don’t force people to use electric will they build the infrastructure and are you really saving the environment? Well it’s a step in the right direction, a baby step, but perhaps a sustainable baby step.

It may be that, or back to the drawing board.

 

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