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Why don’t I have an electric car?

Why don’t I have an electric car? thumbnail

Electric vehicles are on the move. Last year, the number of EVs being driven on the world’s roads increased by almost 50 per cent. According to some analysis, electric vehicles will be a crucial transformative force in the global energy market forcing oil demand to peak by 2020. They bring advantages in terms of parking and congestion charges. They are quiet and, in terms of low level pollution, clean. Why then, as a reasonably informed citizen, do I not have one? I can afford an EV — indeed, I found that they were cheaper than I expected. There are models that suit my needs and I am not worried about the range — the motorways I drive down have sufficient charging points. The single decisive reason is that I have no convenient way of charging an EV at home. The number of charging points in my inner London borough is minimal: its 316,000 residents have just 19 public charging points. I don’t blame the council — in an area with pockets of real deprivation they have huge financial pressures and multiple priorities. But the lack of public charging means that unless you have the money and space to invest in your own off-street charging point an EV is impractical.

The UK government has invested almost £250m in energy storage technologies and created the Faraday Institute. There is a proclaimed and admirable desire to move transportation into a lower carbon model. But if the infrastructure is not in place this will not happen. We would not use mobile phones if there were no networks on which they could operate. London is in no way unique in having problems. The EU recently proclaimed its desire to be a world leader in electromobility but a new report on the rollout of electric charging infrastructure across the EU makes dismal reading. Some member states have failed to produce any plans at all. Others have wildly over-optimistic targets for EVs not matched by the capacity that would allow them to be used. A few countries are doing well against their targets, including the UK, but if you look at the distribution of charging infrastructure on websites such as Zap-Map you will find a few concentrations but large areas that are virtually unsupplied. This applies across most developed economies and is beginning to set a ceiling on the potential for growth in ownership of EVs. Manufacturers are developing dozens of models and the science of energy storage is advancing all the time, but unless EVs can match the convenience of internal combustion engines the take up will be limited. That is one side of the infrastructure story. The other concerns the source of the electricity an EV will use. The country leading the way on EVs is China, which added some 600,000 new vehicles last year.

There is talk of the country mandating their use in some cities. All well and good — until you realise that two-thirds of Chinese electricity is produced from coal. That means shifting from a petrol or diesel car to an EV simply adds to coal demand at the expense of oil, which is less polluting. To be proclaimed as a clean technology, EVs have to be run on low carbon power. That is possible but is not what is being offered at the moment. Unless there is a radical change in this picture the impact of EVs on the global energy scene will be much more limited than has been predicted. An excellent, comprehensive study published last month by S&P Global Platts comes to the conclusion that oil will hold its central role in powering mobility for decades to come; 95 per cent of all transportation is oil fuelled. The EVs currently on the world’s roads displace less than 60,000 barrels a day of oil demand — less than 0.06 per cent of total global demand. For years to come, more vehicles with internal combustion engines will be sold than EVs — and the efficiency gains in ICEs, particularly in terms of mileage, will have a greater impact on total demand. The challenge now for cities such as London and Paris is to find a way to develop the necessary infrastructure ahead of demand. That implies hard choices — such as diverting resources from the current fashion of building cycle ways and imposing much more substantial congestion charges or similarly strong incentives to switch to low carbon fuel sources. The transition to a lower carbon world needs the synchronisation of technology and regulation. Until that happens, I remain trapped in the old world of internal combustion engines.


49 Comments on "Why don’t I have an electric car?"

  1. Kenz300 on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 2:21 pm 

    The electric grid is getting cleaner every year.
    Wind and solar combined with battery storage are just safer, cleaner and cheaper than fossil fuels and nuclear.

    Even if you are not concerned about the environment Cheaper Wins !

    Two-thirds of world’s new energy capacity in 2016 was renewable: IEA

  2. Cloggie on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 2:23 pm 

    In 2022 the Netherlands will have the first subsidy-free offshore wind park in the world:

    Today the Dutch minister of economic affairs made the announcement in the Rotterdam Harbor that the tender will be granted to Dutch energy provider Nuon. This is about the “Hollandse Kust” project (“Dutch Coast”):

    Earlier subsidy-free tenders were granted in the German part of the North Sea, but they will only be realized in 2025.

    The Dutch government announced that it expects to roll out a large number of wind parks in the coming decade.

    The energy transition in Western Europe is now in full swing and it is likely that it will be a smooth one. Exit doomer stories.

    “UK Wind Farms Provide 44% Of Electricity Demand”

    (Last Saturday)

  3. Kenz300 on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 2:25 pm 

    China has mandated all auto makers must have 10% of their vehicles sold be electric in 2019. This rises to 12% in 2020 and keeps rising every year.

    Being the largest auto market in the world all auto makers are scrambling to move to produce all electric vehicles.

    The world is moving to electric transportation. It will happen faster than most people think.

  4. Cloggie on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 2:48 pm 

    Uber (what’s in a name) caused the first fatal accident with self-driving cars in the US (Tempe, Arizona):

    There was a “driver” in the car, but to no avail. Uber’s program was put on ice.

  5. Cloggie on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 5:21 pm 

    Aeolus offshore wind installation ship gets 1600 ton crane mounted:

    The next generation offshore wind turbines will have the size of the Eiffel Tower, up to 300 m high.

  6. Norman Pagett on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 5:58 pm 

    i was walking in london the other day—and had to step over a long lead trailing out through a letterbox across the pavement to a parked EV—that has to be illegal.

    but on a wider note, EVs cannot function long term outside a fossil fuelled infrastructure

    and it’s not the journey that’s the problem—it’s the purpose of the journey.

    In the downsized future that we face, oil is still going to be the critical factor in powering our economic system.
    Look around you, remove anything with a component of coal oil or gas and you will find yourself sitting naked on bare earth starving to death.
    That is the critical nature of our oil problem, not driving around in electric cars

    Wheels have not created our wealth—it is our wealth that has allowed us to have wheels

    saying we’ve increased electric cars by 50% is in effect saying that we’ve increased 0.01% by 50%

    Oil is becoming unaffordable, and electric cars won’t change that

    this explains it more clearly

  7. Outcast_Searcher on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 7:09 pm 

    Cloggie, from articles I read, they haven’t determined who was at fault, or if the car and/or driver could or should have been able to prevent the collision.

    There need to be protocols and standards set up for such accidents, else (regardless who is at fault) if such programs have to be stopped every time a serious accident occurs, it could take much extra time (with human drivers causing mayhem in the meantime) for the needed research and testing to be completed.

    Surely there is some reasonable level of care between Tesla tossing Autopilot to untrained, unpaid customers to test (with nonsense like sitting in the back seat or paying no attention occurring, per Youtube videos) and stopping everything for weeks or months every time a serious incident occurs.

  8. MASTERMIND on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 7:15 pm 

    Considering you can’t take an EV out of the city they are pretty much worthless to most people…Family vacation in our Tesla..Okay Honey we have gone our 200 miles. Lets find a hotel and pull over for the night and filler up! LOL

  9. MASTERMIND on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 7:18 pm 

    UC Davis Peer Reviewed Study: It Will Take 131 Years to Replace Oil with Alternatives (Malyshkina, 2010)

    University of Chicago Peer Reviewed Study: predicts world economy unlikely to stop relying on fossil fuels (Covert, 2016)

    IEA Sees No Peak Oil Demand ‘Any Time Soon’

  10. Outcast_Searcher on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 7:23 pm 

    Norman, common sense says if we stop burning lots of oil for things like driving and heating, and we can make oil from things like FF and coal in a pinch, we can make oil last a VERY long time to build and maintain EV’s.

    Experience also says that more substitutes for the oil now needed should be available as the amount of green energy ramps up.

    And 50% growth gets very significant in time, even if proceeding from a base of about 1% (not the .01% you incorrectly claim).

    At 50% growth, from 1% penetration, it takes 12 years for EV’s to dominate (above 80%).

    Don’t like 50%? At 25% growth, from 1% penetration, it takes 21 years.

    (Source, MSFT CALC).

    I think it could take 3 decades (where a 17% growth rate will do). The thing is, it is happening, and pretending it’s not doesn’t change that.

  11. Outcast_Searcher on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 7:24 pm 

    I should have said “make oil from things like NG and coal” in my previous post to Norman. (I hate that you can’t edit these posts).

  12. Outcast_Searcher on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 7:29 pm 

    I’m now waiting on cars like the Bolt and Model 3 (price/performance) to be real world available and easy to test drive, buy, and be serviced conveniently in the red US states in moderate sized cities.

    (Today, it’s compliance car volumes, or endless promises of what will be in X years).

    Once that happens, if the results of Consumer Reports, etc. confirm that these cars are as good and reliable, with apparent long battery life, as claimed, I’ll be ready to move to an EV.

    Until then, I’ll be content to wait. In the mean time, the charging infrastructure, etc. can only get better. Maybe we can end up with some fast charging slots in many, or even all gas stations at some point.

  13. Outcast_Searcher on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 7:32 pm 

    MasterMindless is at it again, I see. LOL.

    Dude, when you claim you can’t take an EV out of the city, you have ZERO credibility. As more 300 mile EV’s come out and as more charging infrastructure is built, such empty claims will just get increasingly silly.

    Grow up.

  14. asg70 on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 9:54 pm 

    “you can’t take an EV out of the city”

    You’ve never seen a fast-charger before? Come on.

  15. MASTERMIND on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 9:59 pm 


    if you use a fast charger your expensive 5k dollar 1200 lb battery wont last very long. Now why dont you go back to the other forum where you can burn all the books and censor everyone who isn’t a science denier.

  16. MASTERMIND on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 10:04 pm 


    They don’t go 300 miles on average and it all depends on the temperature outside. In cold weather like where the majority of Americans live by the Atlantic ocean. They will never get that much millage. Dont be mad at me because EV’s are unreasonable for the average person. It sad you have to start hurling insults over an argument about cars..Just shows how weak and pathetic EV’s really are. Do we need to create you a safe space to talk about cars now?

  17. MASTERMIND on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 10:09 pm 


    At 50% growth, from 1% penetration, it takes 12 years for EV’s to dominate (above 80%).

    Don’t like 50%? At 25% growth, from 1% penetration, it takes 21 years.

    That is has got to be the funniest and most delusional thing I have ever read on this blog..You are truly a fucking retard. Its taking ev’s ten years to grab one percent of the auto market. And that is with major government tax rebates included. Which are about to expire here shortly. And you think in 12 years they will have 80 percent market share? LOL Only one third of all car owners in America have a garage. So what are all the other people going to do? Drive to a charging station every single day and wait an hour to charge up for another half hour..Not likely. People can barely stand to wait five mins for a cheeseburger at Mcdonalds.

  18. MASTERMIND on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 10:12 pm 


    We are going to be running out of oil here soon in the next few years which will be the end of the global economy and our techie fantasy future…depleting conventional oil will be the final nail in the coffin. Because they can’t do anything about it.

    As M. King Hubbert (1956) shows, peak oil is about discovering less oil, and eventually producing less oil due to lack of discovery.

    IEA Chief warns of world oil shortages by 2020 as discoveries fall to record lows

    Saudi Aramco CEO sees oil shortage coming as investments, oil discoveries drop

    Peak Oil Vindicated by the IEA and Saudi Arabia

  19. MASTERMIND on Mon, 19th Mar 2018 11:04 pm 

    The Scariest Video On Youtube (Yes this is a REAL classroom)

  20. Cloggie on Tue, 20th Mar 2018 1:01 am 

    Wheels have not created our wealth—it is our wealth that has allowed us to have wheels

    Untrue. Wealth and wheels went hand in hand.

    Cloggie, from articles I read, they haven’t determined who was at fault, or if the car and/or driver could or should have been able to prevent the collision.

    It is irrelevant whose fault it is. These things are expected to happen. Won’t stop the development.

    Considering you can’t take an EV out of the city they are pretty much worthless to most people…Family vacation in our Tesla..Okay Honey we have gone our 200 miles. Lets find a hotel and pull over for the night and filler up! LOL

    Self-driving cars (or vans rather) will largely replace the privately owned sedan car, typically a 5-seater vehicle, with average occupation rate of 1.25 and standing by the way side 95% of the time. With location-aware smart-phones and giant computers, you can match supply and demand and have high occupation rates. Cars will become a part of a door-to-door public transport system, with far lower per kilometer cost. Private car ownership will no longer be necessary, people become richer as a consequence, cities will be relieved of parking problems, cities will be quiet and without smog and fine particles.

    GSR can use his free time to watch giant American cars from the seventies on his i-Pad, with tears in his eyes from nostalgia, while cursing me all the way for advocating

  21. Cloggie on Tue, 20th Mar 2018 1:06 am 

    At 50% growth, from 1% penetration, it takes 12 years for EV’s to dominate (above 80%).

    Don’t like 50%? At 25% growth, from 1% penetration, it takes 21 years.

    Stupid thinking. With self-driving, publicly owned cars you do no need 1-on-1 replacement of every vehicle in order to realize the same transportation effort. 6-8 persons per Ford-transit-like vehicles will at least require 4-5 times less vehicles for commuting alone. If you allow for wider variation of work hours, you need even less. People might be encouraged to travel per e-bike if the weather allows. Holland average daily round-trip commuting distance is 34 km. E-bikes can easily make 40 kmh.

    This British study predicts that car companies will die in large numbers by 2030, because far less cars are going to be necessary for the same transportation effort:

    The new cities:

  22. Doug W. on Tue, 20th Mar 2018 4:53 am 

    What if the electric car is just another distraction and dead end on the way to a post fossil fuel less mobile way of life? The electricity has to come from some source; coal? nuclear? And even though lithium is reusable, how soon before we reach “peak” lithiuim?

  23. Davy on Tue, 20th Mar 2018 5:16 am 

    I see the inability of scaling of alternatives in time and size of penetration to make a transition like we made with fossil fuels. This means we are stuck with a foundational resource that is finite and depleting relatively fast. Peak oil dynamics is about economic, technological, and systematic oil in relationship to civilization as much as actual reserves and production. That said it appears we are making the effort to transition and that effort may be significant enough to buy us time and give us enough scale to ride the pony for many more years than the pessimist once thought.

    This is me included. I am less a doomer now but no less a doomer. What I mean by this is all this still does not add up but it is looking better. Optimist who trumpet and cheerlead success are a joke to me. This does not mean they are not partially right. It means victory is not yet in sight. I seriously doubt alternatives will help us much with climate change but any help is worthwhile. I am no less a doomer on climate. Let’s at least get going in that direction of less carbon. Alternatives are the right direction even if they are still half baked.

    Those who think economic decline will make the world cleaners should think again. Bad things will happen if we lower economic activity which means the degrowth meme is very dangerous. Degrowth has to be balanced with increased performance and then you run into the inconvenient reality of diminishing returns and entropy. How tweaked can we ever get civilization? How dedicated and motivated can we get people? How much like a machine can we structure people? Who are we and what do we want to become? The questions go on and on.

    If we can continue modernism it may happen that human behavior and technology will adapt enough for humans to become wiser. To me the key is wisdom in relation to planetary and local carrying capacity. Overshoot must be negotiated and wisdom is needed to succeed. This is why I am most pessimistic. Everywhere I look today I see bad behavior. Instead of seeing less bad behavior I see increasing bad behavior.

    In regards to energy and behavior it is fake green and no green instead of real green. Keep in mind real green is deflationary. Deflation kills economies. Society is still about free choice and affluence first then we try to do a green sacrifice. If some have gone green they are generally rich and still over consuming IOW fake green. Very few real green efforts are part of our behavior system socially globally. Sacrifice is anathema to our modern disposition so we always bargain it away. Good behavior is there and the desire for excellence is a natural human response. The problem is behavior with psychological inconsistencies of bargaining. We have too much gaming at all levels. We have too much competitive cooperation that allows for all matter of behavior for the sake of peace. Conflicts are based on conflicting differences. Reducing differences is a mushy sloppy way of getting things done but conflict is very messy. Without strong focused leadership that scales potently with discipline we will likely never tip the scale in the right direction. Who wants a brave new world of control? That is likely what we need.

    We need real green demand management. Allowing price and governments to dictate policy is only so good. We need enlightened control and I don’t think modern market based liberal democracy that is corrupted by affluence is up to the task. You really need for people to have a common “real green” enlightenment and through that enlightenment practice good behavior that increases human wellbeing. Again real green is green behavior that is about less and more. Less waste and more good behavior yielding a smaller footprint. It is simply less materialism and more wellbeing. That is a very undefined state for humans with so many different dispositions and needs. It is not more with less although that can be part of it to a point. More with less is a bargaining strategy of fake greens. Efficiency has done as much damage as good.

    When you have extreme inequality you can’t have real green good behavior like is needed. Modern civilization needs the risk and rewards of market based capitalism to achieve breakthroughs with economics and technology. This combination is needed with velocity of economic activity to cover our macro overshoot. It is almost a catch 22 of modernism that success kills you. Victory should not be only be about affluence and that is typically what modernism represent. Governments are so corrupted that market mentality is essentially what they promote because the affluent control government. The economics of affluent modernism is unfair and environmentally destructive and that is what you need to make alternative succeed.

  24. dave thompson on Tue, 20th Mar 2018 5:17 am 

    All these electric cars where are they?

  25. Kat C on Tue, 20th Mar 2018 5:50 am 

    I see from time to time articles like this
    “A new report found solar and wind accounted for a record 10 percent of electricity generation in March.”
    But that is 10% of current use. What would be the amount of electricity we would need if we didn’t use any fossil fuels at all for cars or factories or heating homes. And then what percent of THAT electricity are we now generating from alternative sources? That is the number that matters if we are to end fossil fuel use.
    Per this you would need an increase in electricity generation of about 29% for the US and 18% for the world if just CARS are electrified. That doesn’t cover other transport (trains, trucks, ships, planes)
    42% of transportation is not cars so that means we need in the US another say 25% additional electricity for all transportation or half again as much as we now generate. Add in the homes heated by fossil fuels or factories using fossil fuels and you need much more. So just for cars in the US that 10% goes down to 7.5 percent just to electrify all the cars. Lower if you add in all the other stuff

    In otherwords, the hopeful articles about how much non FF electricity we are now generating, are not telling the whole truth.

    Dispute my numbers if you want, but I don’t see how anyone can dispute the idea that if you quote how much electricity currently generated is done without FF you are not telling correctly how much more non FF energy we need to generate.

  26. deadly on Tue, 20th Mar 2018 6:59 am 

    I could use an EV from the middle of April to the middle of October. Road conditions, temperature, weather conditions would determine when to drive an EV.

    Summertime and the living is easy, you can make good use of an electric vehicle then.

    The number one advantage is no gasoline is used to power the drive. Ease of operation is also a great deciding factor.

    Anything with a two hundred mile range is worth considering.

    Wouldn’t have to be much, just enough room to haul some groceries and beer.

    If you want pulling power to pull the 20 foot fishing boat, have a pickup truck with a diesel engine. Fill it with canola oil and fuel conditioners. Go total biofuels.

    Of course, crude oil is the original biofuel, so it is ok to burn gas until the cows come home. Green as it can get.

    Buy a Honda generator, fill it with gasoline, put in your trunk, run it to charge the battery after it goes dry on the Honda EV, you then can drive another two hundred miles.

    Or, buy a Honda with an engine that can charge an onboard battery, you can have battery power or internal combustion in an gas-fueled engine that drives the powertrain.

    Build a diesel-electric drive in the automobile.

    Have Uber use self-driving technology and run over pedestrians.

    Wait, not that. Not much of a future in self-driving cars, not that much of a no-brainer there.

    Just an EV that you can drive fifty miles to make it to town and back with your keg of beer. No fancy schmancy fifteen pieces of flair required to have an EV that works.

    EVs would be the most popular mode of transportation, beer commercials would be able to sell EVs by delivering beer with electric trucks.

    EVs can replace small ICE vehicles, easy. The beer run would require no gas, that in itself is worth considering a purchase of an EV. More money for beer, none for gas. Another no-brainer.

    There is a future for electric vehicles in this world.

    There would probably be a direct correlation between increased sales of EVs and increased sales of beer.

    Always a time for celebration, no matter the reason or occasion.

  27. James Eberle on Tue, 20th Mar 2018 10:03 am 

    EV’s will never scale up to the point where they rule the road. In the US there are more cars than people, and our population is 330 million. Try to imagine 330 million EV’s, with a charging infrastructure to support them. Also, batteries are NOT an energy source. They are an energy storage device. To make the project carbon neutral would require energy generation from solar and wind, possibly a little from hydroelectric, to meet the needs of 330 million cars. Would any of this energy still be available for other uses? What energy sources build the cars? What energy sources are used to extract the raw materials from the earth to be used to manufacture the cars? You guys are not thinking this through. As you guys in the UK might say “it’s bloody rubbish”.

  28. TommyWantsHisMommy on Tue, 20th Mar 2018 11:20 am 

    Just doing some rounding and some quick maths…i figure a 100 million Tesla Model S driving 12,000 miles a year would require probably minimum 40 1000mw nuclear reactors ..not to mention parts, roads, tires, charging infrastructure, lithium, cobalt and all those fun metals…

  29. Kat C on Tue, 20th Mar 2018 8:06 pm 

    Tommy, yes exactly!

  30. Simon on Wed, 21st Mar 2018 1:18 am 

    a few points

    1) various countries will roll out EV’s faster than other, I live in a country with no FF resource (worth mentioning) on my little drive to drop the kids I see always about 5 EV’s, last year it was one, the rollout will happen at different rates around the world, depending on the relevant societies possession of FF.

    2) There is an EU drive to expose the consumer to the vagaries of the wholesale market prices, this will force people to charge at off peak hours when the grid is less busy, thus alleviating the ‘congestion’

    3) As a family we now only are using the car to visit the UK (crap trains), every other trip over distance we use the train, if car is needed the other end, hire it. This is the model for the future



  31. Davy on Wed, 21st Mar 2018 5:13 am 

    “As a family we now only are using the car to visit the UK (crap trains), every other trip over distance we use the train, if car is needed the other end, hire it. This is the model for the future”

    Simon, for many of us in the states that is not an option. We will remain a car and plane culture. You are lucky in Europe to have such an extensive train network. My model for the future is stay in place as much as I can IOW localism. That is hard to do in a car culture but I am trying to make my own little way to make a difference. I almost purchased a Chevy Volt when we had the VW TDi buyback. I didn’t because I need a more substantial vehicle here on the farm. I bought my wife a Subaru outback instead. This is a great car with descent mileage. I would like to go EV plug in or hybrid in the future especially if they incorporated that system into a small truck.

  32. Simon on Wed, 21st Mar 2018 10:08 am 

    Hi Dave
    I concur, currently there is not a rail network sufficient for the job, but this is because you are swimming in oil, so you don’t need one, as the oil starts to get to pricey people will start to look for alternatives, when that happens, we have a ton of TGV technology ready to rock !!!
    The whole farming world will change but how, and into what is a whole other question.


  33. Cloggie on Wed, 21st Mar 2018 1:51 pm

    “UK Offshore Wind Targets Sector Deal That Could Spur £48 Billion In Investments & 30 Gigawatts By 2030”

    “5-Star Movement Deputy: Party’s Plan To Focus On Transport Infrastructure & Renewable Energy”

    “Vattenfall Awarded Two Subsidy-Free 350 Megawatt Offshore Wind Farms In Netherlands”

  34. Kenz300 on Wed, 21st Mar 2018 1:52 pm 

    All new buildings and remodels need to be energy efficient and come with solar panes and battery storage.
    Adding insulation and air sealing an older home would be well worth the expense.
    All garages need to come with L2 outlets for charging electric vehicles.
    In a few years electric vehicles will be the standard. Fossil fuels are the past.
    Some builders are building NET ZERO homes which have ZERO utility bills.
    These homes cost more up front but save money month after month forever.

  35. MASTERMIND on Wed, 21st Mar 2018 1:53 pm 

    Putin shows off Nukes hitting America. And crickets from Trump. Then Trump calls him and
    thanks him on his ballot stuffing fake victory. Either Trump is a total bitch or he has been compromised. The Cons have sold out everything they stand for for this coward. Family values, free trade, free speech, national security..etc.

  36. Cloggie on Wed, 21st Mar 2018 1:57 pm 

    All these electric cars where are they?

    Seek no longer:


    The Norwegian government has decided that by 2025 no fossil-based cars can be sold any longer in that DJT certified non-shithole country.

    And guess what? The Norwegian population tries to beat their own government and ensure that by 2025 a large chunk of the privately owned car-fleet will consist of e-vehicles.

    Why Norway?

    They have too much money from oil (oh irony) and they have lots of electricity from hydro-power.

    Norway will be to e-vehicles what Denmark was for wind turbines: an early adopter that will be rewarded with big new industries.

  37. MASTERMIND on Wed, 21st Mar 2018 2:10 pm 


    When will electric cars be able to sell without massive tax rebates? Hong Kong stopped giving rebates and their sales dropped by 99 percent the next month. LOL They cant survive without rebates!

  38. MASTERMIND on Wed, 21st Mar 2018 2:23 pm 

    If Trump imposes tariffs on China…Does that mean Trump and Ivanka products will cost more?

  39. Cloggie on Wed, 21st Mar 2018 2:53 pm 

    “When will electric cars be able to sell without massive tax rebates? Hong Kong stopped giving rebates and their sales dropped by 99 percent the next month. LOL They cant survive without rebates!”

    Everything new needs to be subsidized until it is grown up: liitle birds, human babies, startups, technologies. In the grand scheme of things city state Hong-Kong is irrelevant.

  40. MASTERMIND on Wed, 21st Mar 2018 3:43 pm 


    It wasn’t just Hong Kong, Denmark stop subsidizing them and the exact same thing happened. And if people in Denmark dont want to buy them without rebates good fucking luck getting American’s to do it. people on the right in America will never buy them even if they were a quality car (which they aren’t). Just because they dont want to be seen as being an environmentalist.

  41. dave thompson on Wed, 21st Mar 2018 4:31 pm 

    Yes Cloggie I ask where are all of these EV cars? There are only 0.2% of the total light weight vehicles on the road.

  42. Cloggie on Wed, 21st Mar 2018 4:50 pm 

    Yep, babies start at 7 pounds on average, before they turn into a Napoleon.

  43. dave thompson on Wed, 21st Mar 2018 7:18 pm 

    Oh Cloggie you certainly know how to put together logic and cleaver euphemism.

  44. Cloggie on Thu, 22nd Mar 2018 1:29 am 

    Uber self-driving car accident images:

  45. Kat C on Thu, 22nd Mar 2018 4:15 am 

    Even if you force everyone to drive electric vehicles you haven’t solved the problem because if you increase how much total electricity a society uses you have to increase how much electricity you are able to provide with non FF sources. Its not enough to use wind and solar to replace current electric use, you have to be able to do much more. And you have to replace all the gas stations with electric charging stations. And you have to create more stations for long distance traveling. And you have to upgrade the electric grid. And you have to turn rail transport into electric transport.
    And you have to build a fleet of wind powered ships to transport the rare earth minerals needed.
    So along with car purchase subsidies you have all this other investment to make.
    The world got rich off of high ERoEI oil. Excess inexpensive energy built our infrastructure. How can low ERoEI energy fund all this?

  46. fmr-paultard on Thu, 22nd Mar 2018 6:52 am 

    Kat supertards will do all that don’t worry. Our job is to kill SENTAPBs and free up resources and time supertards will make it work.

    Battery problems can be solved different ways. My thinking to pay only for amount of charge. Robot arm remove and install changed battery for you.

  47. Kat C on Thu, 22nd Mar 2018 1:38 pm 

    frm-paultard I am not worried. I am just pointing out the illogical thinking that we ever have a civilization on this level based on current energy from the sun and wind. I accepted that humans are going extinct and nothing can be done about it anymore. In the meantime to pass the time I like to point out errors in thinking about the whole mess.

    Supertards nor anyone else can’t fix it. Certainly bloggers are wasting too much time arguing to fix it. I can waste time arguing because I know it can’t be fixed.

    What in the world is a SENTAPB and how do I kill it. I know how to axe a rooster, and squash a roach bug. How did I kill a SENTAPB?

    Ah change out the batteries using more energy and resources. So how big will this stockpile of batteries have to be so everyone can just stop and change batteries rather than stop and charge. Each charging station will have to have enough extras on hand. More up front investment for the changeover to all electric.

    If people were serious about getting rid of fossil fuels the personal car would be banned. Electric trolleys would be installed all over the country. Rail lines would be electrified. Maybe electric taxis would be allowed if they took multiple fares. Inconvenient for people used to the personal car but that is what serious would look like. There was a time before cars and humans survived eh……….

    Meanwhile please post a link to the factory that is producing the clipper ships to go get those rare earth minerals the “renewable” energy requires.

  48. pointer on Fri, 23rd Mar 2018 11:39 am 

    As an EV owner and driver, I feel I can provide some actual data rather than mere opinion. But I’ll end with my opinion. First the data.

    On balance, an EV objectively sucks. You can’t take a trip of any appreciable length. I can barely get out of my rather small home state of Massachusetts without having to recharge. A trip to NYC that takes 4.5 hours in an ICEV turns into at least twice that. That’s assuming you can find a series of available rapid chargers. The trip takes much longer if you have to fall back on level 2 chargers, or on the 120v outlet at that motel you stay at while the car charges for ten hours on your level 1 cable.

    There’s the constant anxiety that my destination charging station I plan to stop at next might not be open or might be broken. I’m constantly checking the %-remaining charge readout on the dash rather than playing Richard Petty on the highway. It’s like driving an ICEV where you can never fill the tank more than 1/4 full, with gas stations few and far in between, and often not operating. On the plus side, with the EV, I drive much more slowly than my fellow ICEV drivers, which gets me many more miles per kwh than they are getting. But they don’t care. Most don’t give a crap about the mileage they get. Mostly their worried about speed traps.

    Even for my local errand trips, which is how I sold my wife on the EV, the range is pretty limited. It’s not like you can run around all day. A few trips, and you’re done — hooked up and charging. If you don’t want to wreck your battery with frequent rapid charging (100amps at 400v is an energy flow to behold! but I suspect does damage to the battery substance), you best use level 2 chargers that add only 15 miles per hour of charging. If you want to super-baby the battery, go for the level 1, that gets you 5 miles per hour of charging. Woo hoo!

    Yeah, yeah, I hear that great new battery technology is on the way that will provide much more range. These batteries will still be constrained by the laws of physics. Driving 75mph (like anyone who gives up their ICEV for an EV will want to do) and up hills will quickly reveal the difference between a theoretical 200 mile range and reality. And the bigger the battery, the longer it will take to charge. Superchargers can deliver 40 kw. This can fill my 20kwh battery in 30 minutes. If you’ve got an 80kwh battery, good for you, but that will take you 30 minutes to add 20 kwh. Maybe we’ll soon have even beefier superchargers (as is rumored) that can deliver 100 kw or more. I don’t know if you appreciate that amount of power, but personally, for myself, I would not want to be near any system that is transmitting that rate of energy flow. The 40 kw is already fairly disturbing.

    Anyway, here’s how I see things playing out, and pure EV’s won’t be part of the picture.

    Correct me if I am wrong, experts, but we started out with about 2.5 trillion barrels of recoverable oil. We still had most of that in the ground when I was born, which was in the 1950’s. Since that time, we’ve burned 1.25 trillion of these barrels. Now we have another 1.25 trillion barrels left to extract and burn. I hope I have my numbers correct. Even if not, my prediction about the “long emergency” (which is not as dire as Mr. Kuntler’s) should still be reasonably on target.

    Right now, as we still have half of the recoverable oil still on tap, we suck it down as if there will be no end to it. Why it’s just common sense to use oil, they say. You’d have to be a fool not to, they say. That’s just human nature. Often I present our current mentality with an analogy to the super-size shake you can get a fast food place. When the shake is still half full, you still suck it down just like you were doing when it was full. You don’t start to feel any disappointment or change in circumstances until your straw starts to draw in air along with the dregs of the shake when the shake level starts getting close to the bottom,. Then you stir the straw around, and you reposition the straw to the lowest nook of the remaining shake liquid, hoping to get at least one more good draw of shake before accepting the reality that your shake is pretty much done. You might even put the shake down for five minutes, hoping it melts a little, thereby becoming less viscous and less prone to allowing air up the straw along with the shake. A lot like fracking, I guess.

    Anyway, when we’re down to the last .25 trillion barrels of oil or so, what will our state of mind be?

    Before I go on, take a moment to mediate on that — we’re down to 250 billion barrels of oil, and we’re using 35 billion each year. What sort of feeling does that evoke? Alarm? Panic? Dread?

    At some point, and probably near the .25 trillion barrels left point, human nature will kick in. The president will be briefed on the impending crisis, and only then will the problem be recognized by the masses. And when it does, we will get clever and industrious. And thus my prediction.

    First, we’ll realize we need to use up the remaining oil very, very efficiently. Suddenly we’ll have cars that can get 200-300 miles per gallon. Don’t ask me how, but I bet we’ll get scared enough that suddenly we’ll begin to think very clearly. I suspect the solution will have involve some electric-gas hybrid approach, where vehicles have some IC engine that can run on all sorts of junk fuel that recharges the battery on a continuing basis and still gives us some approximation of that ICEV experience and convenience. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I’m overlooking the petroleum needed to make such cars, but I think our cleverness will extend into that regime as well.

    And then we’ll also realize that all that solar and wind energy can be best used to synthesize the fuels we need. Sure, they’ll be a lot more expensive and a lot less plentiful than the fuels we got from cracking petroleum, but at least we’ll be able to continue with carbon-based fuels. This will change driving habits dramatically, since even with high mileage vehicles, we’ll be loathe to burn that $50 (in today’s dollars) gallon of gas.

    Which will make us realize that mass transit is not such a bad thing after all. We’ll have a resurgence of large, efficient vehicles that transport hundreds of people, all of whom have learned to wait patiently at mass transit stations. Hopefully there is an insurrection against the entrenched numb-brained dolts that run most public transit these days, so that this mass transit of the future is as trouble-free as (well, at least where I live) the water delivery system — it just works.

    Anyway, I realize that I’m ignoring some of the other catastrophes heading our way, including the starvation, destruction and other associated problems that climate change will bring, and the economic chaos that debt hitting the wall will cause. There will be massive depopulation, and hopefully not nuclear war, but not even that is out of the question. And we’ll forget a lot of what we now know, although forgetting how to create nuclear bombs might be a good thing to forget. Feel free to list all the things I’ve overlooked, like how it is not possible to smoothly scale down a petroleum economy.

    Perhaps this is all part of nature’s plan for the evolution of intelligent life. We’re just playing out part, and there’s not much we can do to change the course of events. Civilizations have collapsed before, with the survivors retrenching and bringing about a new civilization. This time, an interesting problem will be that a certain (possibly large) portion of the land on earth will be (h/t to the Apes) “forbidden zones”. So be it.

    So we’re not going to have an EV future. But we will have another civilization.

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