Electric Vehicles combat climate change

10 March 2022

Transportation sector emissions are a major contributor to ambient air pollution which accounts for more than a quarter of greenhouse gas emissions. This sector is also partially responsible for the acid deposition, stratospheric ozone depletion and climate change. Recently, road traffic exhaust emissions have been the source of much concern about the effects of urban air quality on human health and tropospheric ozone production. Emissions from road traffic are being reduced substantially by the introduction of technology especially three-way catalysts and also, most recently by the introduction of Electric vehicles. 

Switching fuel combustion vehicles with electric vehicles is one of the best alternative courses of action in order to reduce CO2 emissions and combat climate change.Electricvehicles(EV) and their manufacture have lately emerged as the latest trend in the automobile industry with various commended and known automobile companies such as Tesla, Nissan, Chevrolet, Hyundai, Kia and many more plummeting straight onto the movement. Even luxury brands like Audi, Porsche as well as BMW have embraced the drift and have positioned electric models on sale lately. In the recent 20 years, the electric car has undergone a significant technological development that has not only lowered its cost, but has also made it more competent and resourceful. The current models can travel between 200 km and 400 km autonomously, though there are brands that may even double that. This development is not just because of the innovation in batteries, but also because of theevolutions in the design, brake load system, better wind resistance, "Eco" driving and energy efficiency systems that help the driver reduce consumption.

A comprehensive substitution of conventional vehicles with electric ones is possible today and could play a momentous role in meeting climate change mitigation goals. The biggest factor that makes the EVs an asset is that itemits zero tailpipes (direct) emissions. The emissions from driving electric are far less from the ones caused by driving petrol or diesel ones.Tailpipe emissions have anupfrontand calamitous impact on the air quality of their locality. The CO2 emissions of electric vehicles, however, are much cleaner when compared to the emissions from the most eco-friendly petrol engines. Even the new ICE vehicles release large amounts of harsh particle pollution causing grave health concerns like asthma, heart attacks  and cancer etc. The electric vehicles meanwhile are not directly emitting these particulates into the thin air.Electric vehicles generate a lower carbon footprint over the course of their lifetime than those that use internal combustion engines.  The complete substitution of the traditional vehicles with that of EVs wouldlead to an approximately 30 percent reduction in emissions from transportation.

Electricity grids in most of the world are still powered by fossil fuels such as coal or oil, and EVs depend on that energy to get charged. Separately, EV battery production remains an energy-intensive process.A study from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Energy Initiative found that battery and fuel production for an EV releases higher emissions than the production of an automobile. But those higher environmental costs are counterbalanced by EVs’ superior energy efficiency over time.In short, the total emissions per mile for battery-powered cars are lower than comparable cars with internal combustion engines.

The electric vehicles are greener, but their full green potential is still many years away.The complete extraction of thebenefits of EVs will be achieved only after the electricity sources become renewable, and it might take several decades for that to happen.