Report Highlights Electric Car Concerns
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Thursday, 14 February 2013 10:00


A report from Shrink That Footprint has discovered that the use of electric cars in countries where the main source of electricity is from coal based power stations actually leads to no improvement in carbon emissions over petrol based cars.

The Shades of Green: Electric Cars Carbon Emissions Around the Globe report shows that India and South Africa (370g and 318g CO2e/km respectively) have the highest levels of carbon emissions related to the use of electric cars, while Paraguay and Iceland see the lowest emissions at just 70g CO2e/km due to the use of hydro-electrcity. 

The UK, the US and Germany use a mix of energy options including solar, wind, coal and gas. This has meant that these countries come around the middle in the table with between 179g and 202g CO2e/km. 

The author of the report Lindsay Wilson has commented that this report shows how the benefit of going electric varies around the world. She points out that electric cars can only reach their potential if they are charged with low carbon energy such as solar or wind. 

Wilson also says that electric cars are generally more energy intensive to manufacture and have a lower lifetime mileage and this greatly affects their overall emissions per kilometre.