Writing in the WSJ, Holman Jenkins makes the case that electric vehicles may not be the climate savior that the green crowd would have you believe.
Passenger Vehicles Account for 7.5% of all emissions
If the Environmental Protection Agency is right, the average light vehicle racks up 11,500 miles a year and sits idle 96% of the time. The World Resources Institute says passenger vehicles account for 7.5% of all emissions, but this includes buses, taxis, etc. Rental cars average 31,000 miles. Other fleet vehicles average 23,000 or more. Heavy trucks average 63,000 miles. One finding that appalled fleet operators is that their vehicles spend up to 33% of their time idling, which is not how people treat their personal vehicles.
Even if the Global Auto Fleet Goes Electric Oil Demand isn’t Going Away
The International Energy Agency in 2016 estimated that if 50% of all new cars were electric, petroleum use would continue to grow because of “trucks, aviation and the petrochemical industry and we don’t have major alternatives to oil products there.”
Lesson: When government seeks to do complicated things while appeasing multiple constituencies, it usually produces absurd results. And even less talked about is the 57-year-old U.S. pickup truck tariff that further entrenches this Detroit business model.
EVs are wonderful for many reasons but not for the reasons that climate-sanctimonious politicians promote. I won’t repeat an earlier column on climate policies that might actually be worth pursuing. Notice that the one innovation that greens opposed, fracking, has done more to reduce emissions than all government efforts combined.
Read the entire article here.