As energy experts, we like to keep up with all the ways that the energy market is transforming. We love hearing about new developments in the way energy is produced and used. Energy efficiency, energy independence, emissions, sustainability, renewables, a fossil-free future, carbon footprints, clean energy, air quality, climate change. It all matters to us. Energy matters a lot.
When it comes to the environment and clean energy, we are market leaders in providing clean solar energy solutions to homes and businesses in South East Queensland. Solar energy’s momentum keeps building, especially now that it’s moving into other areas such as the car market, where it is being used to charge electric vehicle batteries, for example. We’ve been learning about how Tesla, the Californian automotive and energy company, is leading the way towards a sustainable future through its incredible electric technology. There is a lot of talk about their new electric vehicle, the Tesla Model 3, that’s come on the market in Oz, which is a welcome sign for the local EV industry.
Are EVs for everyone?
Another part of the energy revolution is the uptake of electric vehicles (EVs) and the move away from a reliance on gasoline as a fuel. As a result, you’ll hear this question being asked a lot: Are electric cars actually any better for the environment than a regular petrol-run car?
We found a great video that breaks all the information down for you, the pros and cons, and it’s some of the most reliable info we’ve found in this format on the web, as it’s all verifiable through citations and links that are provided to back up the claims made. Check it out here: https://youtu.be/6RhtiPefVzM
In the video, the presenter answers the following questions:
Doesn’t the production of electric cars and their batteries themselves produce a lot of emissions?
Aren’t electric cars fuelled by fossil fuels anyway, offsetting any emission benefits of those EVs?
Isn’t the mining of lithium, one of the components of an EV battery, terrible for the environment?
Discussing the pros and cons of EVs can take a while; it’s a highly complicated topic. In summary, the main takeaway from this video is that electric cars aren’t any worse for the environment than petrol-powered cars, regardless of where your energy comes from to charge them, and in the vast majority of cases, they are environmentally superior.
As for the stats on emissions from using an electric vehicle, they show that it can take as little as under two years for an EV to ‘break even’. That is, to be shown to, on average, produce fewer emissions than its gasoline competitor. However, this does depend very much on where you are driving your car, because it matters where the energy is coming from, since different states produce energy from different sources. This means that an EV is not the best option in every state, but, as electricity production becomes greener, an EV does become the best option overall. In summary, the interesting revelation is that the vast majority of car emissions come from vehicle use, not from car or battery production, and so it is a myth to say that an EV is worse for the environment.
One more thing: the lithium issue. It’s often mentioned that lithium mining is unenvironmentally friendly. But, lithium is only 5-7% of an EV battery. It’s true that lithium extraction is a very water-intensive process, so it has an environmental consequence. The ‘but’ is that the mining of lithium does not take place in areas where the ecology is affected, because it’s mostly in desert areas, while drilling for oil takes place in more diverse and fragile ecosystems. Therefore, it’s untrue to say mining for lithium is worse than drilling for oil.
The Tesla revolution
Most of you have heard about Teslas, and what you’ve heard may have been mixed. According to this source, Clean Technica – https://cleantechnica.com/2018/11/18/buying-a-tesla-is-the-best-thing-you-can-do-for-the-environment/ – buying a Tesla is the best thing you can do for the environment!
They tell us a few reasons. Investing in a Tesla helps grow the battery industry, and this will end up lowering the cost of batteries over time, making a 100% sustainable future possible. Buying a Tesla is a great environmental choice, not because of the direct emissions that it prevents, but because of all the indirect emissions it will prevent. And the final big positive reason? Tesla is creating a revolution. It’s leading the transition to a sustainable future, and leading the movement to disrupt the fossil fuel industry.
The latest model of the Tesla has been released and it’s more affordable than previous models. Some are saying this could be the tipping point where EVs go mainstream. How exciting is that?!
Check out the new Tesla Model 3 here: https://www.tesla.com/en_AU/model3