Electric vehicles (EVs) are an essential part of meeting worldwide goals on climate change. They are centre stage and if we adopt them will limit warming to well-below 2C or 1.5C, which would be inline with the Paris Agreement’s targets.
No greenhouse gas emissions directly come from EVs, they run on electricity that is still produced from fossil fuels in many parts of the world. The manufacture uses energy also, the vehicle – and the battery.
We have been using fossil fuels for a relatively short time in respect of earths history, just over 200 years. They were formed millions of years ago, fossil fuels are created from the remains of living organisms, like plants and animals, which buried under deposits. These remains over time are fossilised due to compression. This creates carbon rich fuel sources e.g. natural gas, coal and oil.
Allot of CO₂ is produced from fossil and other harmful gases when burned, leading to environmental problems and resulting in global warming. It is estimated by 2050 fossil fuels will be used up at our current rate of consumption.
What are the alternatives?
Renewable energy sources are the way to go, examples like solar and wind power can provide a viable alternative to fossil fuels. These sources of energy are natural and renewable they won’t run out. They are also more environmentally friendly, producing very little or no CO₂ when generating electricity.
An interesting and scientifically relevant article entitled “Traversing the mountaintop: world fossil fuel production to 2050” is linked here fossil fuel production to 2050.
The conclusion from the study was:
“World fossil fuel production has grown continuously, albeit irregularly, since 1950. That growth will continue, but only for the next 15–30 years. Combined fossil fuel production peaks at 469 quads in 2025 (low), 535 quads in 2035 (medium) and 610 quads in 2040 (high). These peaks are only 18, 35 and 54 per cent above the 2005 levels of world fossil fuel production. In each scenario, production stabilises within 1 per cent of the peak for 10–15 years before declining continuously thereafter.”
If you are a “Trumpite” and deny global warming is occurring some useful information by the Royal Society in London Uk can be found on their web site. The Royal Society is a Fellowship of many of the world’s most eminent scientists and is the oldest scientific academy in continuous existence.
Earth’s average surface air temperature has increased by about 1 °C (1.8 °F) since 1900, with over half of the increase occurring since the mid-1970s. A wide range of other observations (such as reduced Arctic sea ice extent and increased ocean heat content) and indications from the natural world (such as poleward shifts of temperature-sensitive species of fish, mammals, insects, etc.) together provide incontrovertible evidence of planetary-scale warming.
Is the current level of atmospheric CO2 concentration unprecedented in Earth’s history?
The current level of atmospheric CO2 concentration is unprecedented in the past million years, during which time modern humans evolved and societies developed. The atmospheric CO2 concentration was however higher in Earth’s more distant past (many millions of years ago), at which time palaeoclimatic and geological data indicate that temperatures and sea levels were also higher than they are today.