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Old 07-02-2013, 02:44 PM   #36 (permalink)
t vago
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Originally Posted by UFO View Post
That seems ironic considering petroleum use is the core issue. From my perspective you are losing the forest for the trees.
The irony is lost, that people here are vehemently defending electric vehicles and denying that they have a larger carbon footprint than the ICE vehicles they are to replace.

Somebody here mentioned aluminum and copper as "rare earth metals", for instance (I'll quote, this time, so that the quotation doesn't mysteriously disappear)

Originally Posted by Ryland View Post
The other argument in that link is that EV's use large amounts of rare metals... sure, but so do gasoline cars! gasoline cars use about as much aluminum in the engine block as the Leaf has in aluminum body panels, the copper in the motor for the Leaf is about as much copper as a single run of outlets in your house, but you don't have an issue with having outlets in your house, do you??? There is also a few pounds of copper in the starter and alternator of your gasoline car... why is that copper ok but the copper in an electric motor in an EV is bad!
The problem isn't with easily recyclable copper or aluminum. The problem is with that nasty lithium in EV batteries. It takes a lot of energy to extract lithium from the ground, for instance, because lithium does not occur naturally in elemental form. The lithium must be handled carefully, because it's kind of reactive. Car batteries made with lithium must be made explosion-proof, which both makes the battery more complex and reduces their maximum energy density (which, incidentally, raises the price even more). Oh, yah... nobody's recycling lithium batteries because it's too expensive to reprocess the battery! However, let's pat each other on the back instead, for figuring out clever insults about "Uhmuricans!"

And what about motors? The EV motor approaches 90% efficiency, true. But that has to rely on a power plant which will typically get about 35% efficiency from burning petroleum. Oh, and let's count the distribution grid, which will zap out another 5%. Charging? Say buh-bye to another 10%. All of a sudden, EVs aren't that much more efficient than ICEs.
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