Almost every developed country in the world actively supports electric vehicles and is about to phase out internal combustion engines. At least, this is the sense one gets from following current automotive news. At the federal level, 14 countries have already proclaimed an impending ban on cars using internal combustion engines. This includes not only tiny Singapore and affluent Norway, but also Sri Lanka, Slovenia, Belgium, the United Kingdom, Egypt, and even India with its billion people.
But still there are serious doubts regarding the reality of such a scenario and have found 5 important obstacles on the way to an electric car future.
Electric vehicles cannot exist without batteries. The car batteries store power in themselves, and the charging/discharging cycles appear due to the chemical reaction caused by the interaction of numerous chemical elements. It is impossible to manufacture a battery, which means an electric automobile, or to proceed with car batteries replacement without it. Or you could assemble it, but it would then move along the wires like a trolleybus.
This means that the volume of lithium, cobalt and neodymium reserves becomes the limit beyond which the future of electric cars ends. For how long will these elements last?
Business has exactly one reason to produce electric cars — money. If companies cannot make money on the production of electric cars, then the concept of cars with an electric engine will die due to unprofitability. And this process seems to have already begun.
The famous manufacturer of Dyson vacuum cleaners was one of the first to admit that electric cars do not pay off. The company expected to invest $ 2.7 billion in the new direction; for this Dyson acquired several startups and switched 523 employees to the development of an electric car. The company even managed to build a prototype. But in the end I closed the project. And what is more, even Tesla is struggling nowadays with incredible difficulties.
According to a study conducted by the worldwide consulting firm Deloitte, many startups for the production of electric vehicles and their components will fail owing to the highly expensive cost of equipment and production.
In the modern world, the development and production of electric vehicles requires enormous costs. It is possible to recapture these costs only if you sell cars at ultra-high prices – but then few people will buy them. And then financial incentives from states and municipalities come into play.
The media enjoys reporting on government incentives for electric vehicles. The opposite stages are listed less frequently, although this does not imply that all countries embrace electrification all at once. Oil and gas exporting countries, for example, would find such a transformation economically unprofitable. And, recently, such countries have been increasingly vocal about it. They also began to carefully limit the take-off of electric vehicles.
According to a Bloomberg report, the widespread use of electric vehicles will raise global electricity consumption by 6.8% by 2040.
And this amount only considers the demands of the electric car’s final owner. Meanwhile, more electricity will be required for the mining of rare earth metals essential for electric vehicle batteries. as stated by
Coal combustion produces around 38% of the world’s electricity. Coal mining is one of the dirtiest industries on the planet. Forests are being cut down in large numbers for the sake of coal mining, and pollutants are discharged throughout the mining process, poisoning miners and local populations.
Coal is burned in power plants, and as a result, sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides, which cause acid rain, enter the atmosphere. As long as the electricity for electric vehicles is generated by coal-fired power plants, electric vehicles will only contribute to environmental pollution by promoting coal combustion.
The situation is no better with other sources of energy for power plants. Nuclear power plants create spent nuclear fuel that can poison the environment and kill all living things for tens of thousands of years after use. According to a large study by Greenpeace, the existing methods of disposal of such waste do not guarantee reliable isolation, and all the analyzed burials have leaks.
At the beginning of the 2000s, the reputation of diesels was as impeccable as it is now with electric vehicles: diesels were considered cleaner and more economical than gasoline analogues. It all ended with the debunking of the diesel myth and the planned ban of such engines in many countries. Electro-mobiles thus have a lot of chances to be next and seem not to be a panacea.
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