Latest Climate Propaganda: EV’s reducing CO2 in SF Bay Area

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The latest propaganda from “researchers” at the University of California-Berkeley contends that electric vehicles (EV) are reducing the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the local atmosphere.

Details of the study are sparse (see this link), but essentially preliminary results contend that there is a 1.8 percent reduction in atmospheric CO2 occurring in the San Francisco Bay Area.

On the surface, this stated reduction might make sense. I spend a lot of time on the Bay Area roadways. The summary I read does not tell us how many EV’s are on the road in the Bay Area, except that “the electric vehicle market has blossomed.” Certainly the Bay Area, home to the Silicon Valley, is said to have the highest percentage of EV usage in the United States. However, my observation is that EV’s make up likely no more than two percent of all vehicles on the road; so the stated 1.8 percent reduction passes the first smell test.

However, despite California claiming their grid is occasionally carbon neutral, that talking point is a fabrication. Despite various solar and wind farms, the grid in California is primarily powered by natural gas, which emits carbon dioxide when burned, therefore the primary source of fuel for the EV in the Golden State is a fossil fuel. Because California has eliminated most of its homegrown natural gas electrical generating facilities (only three remain), the state constantly buys natural gas-fired energy from other states (at a premium, that’s why California has the most expensive energy prices in the nation). Depending on California’s energy needs, those states often backfill their grids with cheap coal-fired electricity, which emits significantly higher levels of CO2 than natural gas. In other words, coal is often being used to charge the electric vehicle batteries.

As I explain in my new book, Climate Cult, the big rub against the EV is the immense  carbon footprint associated with its production–it’s significantly larger than that of its gas or diesel counterparts. The reason for this is the mining of lithium and the extensive process required to fabricate that toxic material into the massive battery arrays required to power the EV (a Tesla contains nearly 2000 of these lithium batteries). The mining is carried out by monstrous diesel tractors in places like China and Africa where there are no regulations for industrial exhaust. That, plus the fact the lithium is then transported to battery factories via trains and ships energized by fossil fuels, adds to the carbon footprint of the EV. However, this extensive and very real carbon footprint is completely ignored by the electric vehicle fanatics.

In order to appease its liberal constituents, California is playing an energy shell game designed to make the state look green.

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Brian Sussman

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