Electric Cars May Not Be The Best

DYKElectric cars seem to be the next big thing in enviro-friendliness.  But consider this…  If you get your electricity from a coal burning power plant, a gasoline automobile that gets 40 MPG is comparable to an electric car as far as the environment is concerned.

<<<MATH ALERT>>> A normal electric car takes 2,800 BTUs of energy to go a mile.  A gallon of gas produces about 125,000 BTU’s.  Divide by 20, and a gasoline car that gets 20 MPG needs 6250 BTUs to go the same distance.  That’s two and a half times more pollution.  Drive a 15MPG SUV, we’re talking 8350BTUs!

Up that mileage to 44 MPG, and we’re talking the same amount of fossil fuel energy to run an electric car or an efficient gasoline automobile.

What do you take from this?  If your neighborhood gets it’s electricity from a clean plant, be it an updated coal plant, natural gas, hydro- or solar- power, you’re better off with an electric.  If you’re like 85% of the country and get your electricity from coal, stick with a gas-sipping hybrid or compact.