General Knowledge

How clean are electric vehicles?

Automakers and drivers alike are now accepting that electric vehicles (EVs) are not a passing fad. New models are being released from a wider range of manufacturers every year and more households are using EVs in favour of fossil fuel-powered cars.

The increased popularity of electric cars is driven by their eco-friendly reputation. Rather than using petrol and diesel, these innovative options instead use rechargeable packs of Lithium-ion batteries. However, while EVs don’t require fuels that emit harmful emissions to run, they still must be charged using electricity, so how clean exactly are electric vehicles? Read on to find out.

Running on electrical power

EVs can be powered up using a home charge-point or at publicly available charging stations. An electric car battery is charged in the same way you’d charge the battery in your smartphone, via electricity. The question is, how is this electricity produced? In many countries, coal is still used to generate electricity, which means that any EVs charged will still contribute to harming the environment. Here in the UK, however, there is an increasing use of offshore wind farms to produce electricity, which is a far cleaner and more sustainable source of energy.

Zero emissions from electric cars

Unlike traditional fossil-fuelled cars that run on diesel and petrol, electric battery-run cars release no tailpipe emissions, a feature that sees their owners pay zero road tax. This lack of toxic emissions makes electric cars a far cleaner option then vehicles that guzzle up gas to get where they’re going.

The EV production process

While up and running, EVs are cleaner to run than conventional cars, but making them is another matter. Like any vehicles manufactured, electric cars require a process that involves CO2 emissions. A considerable amount is emitted during the production of their complex battery packs for electric cars, which is why they cannot be classed as an entirely zero-emission product.

In sum, electric cars can’t be created without causing some harm to the environment, but once on the road, it is possible to charge them using sustainably-sourced energy and they will not be releasing any harmful emissions into our atmosphere.

Photo: Free image by Pixabay

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