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Opinion >  Letters

Electric vehicle environmental impact

Nicholas Deshais’s “Electric –Vehicle Buzz is Real” (March 12) misses the major flaws in the argument that electric cars are good for the environment.

First is the fact that 70 percent of electricity in the U.S. is hydrocarbon-generated. Even in the Northwest, there is no excess hydroelectric power. If you plug in an electric car in Spokane, it is highly likely the power is coming from a natural gas power plant. The tailpipe just becomes an emission-spewing smokestack.

Secondly, electric cars are by definition heavy, as they carry an over 800-pound battery. Physics dictates that the energy required to move a 6,200-pound Tesla is directly proportional to its mass. This is more energy than most light trucks.

The production of electric vehicles has a greater environmental impact than conventional vehicles in almost all environmental impact categories. Additionally, lithium mining has large negative environmental and political impacts.

For more than half of Americans the environmental footprint of a similar-size electric car will be larger - not smaller - than a conventional internal combustion economy car.

Laws of physics dictate there is no perpetual motion machine, and there are no clean electric cars.

I’ll stick with my bike.

Russell VanderWilde



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