The ecological foundations of life on this planet are crumbling, and more cars are not the answer.
By Max Wilbert
February 2, 2021
I used to believe that electric cars would save the planet. Like so many others, I saw the TV commercials. A family rolled smoothly through green forests in their shiny electric car. The air was fresh, the car was spotless, the people were happy. Global warming was nothing but a memory. It seemed like human and nature were in perfect harmony.
Like all advertising, of course, this was a lie. The marketing campaign to convince us all that electric cars are good for the planet has been incredibly effective. But in reality, there isn’t evidence for this.
Consider this: no country has seen a decline in carbon emissions attributed to adoption of electric cars. In fact, as electric car use has grown over the past decade, global carbon emissions have grown as well.
The obvious retort is that this is correlation not causation. But I believe there is a strong causal link. The logic is simple: electric cars are expensive luxury items that are only affordable for the wealthiest 10% of the global population — even accounting for government subsidies. The average new electric car costs $55,600, according to Car and Driver Magazine. That’s almost $20k more than the average new gas-fueled car (which are also expensive luxury items).
Still don’t believe a car is a luxury good?
How about this: average per capita global income is about $4,000, which means the average person on the planet would have to work for 14 years to afford an electric car, assuming they don’t spend a dime on clothing, food, rent, medical, or anything else during that time.
For most of our existence on this planet, we didn’t have cars. Go back a generation, or two, or three, and your own ancestors didn’t have cars. The vast majority of people in the world – more than 6 billion — do not own a car today.
Cars are optional luxury products. And every new car, electric or otherwise, that is produced comes with a long trail of ecological destruction. Follow each part of a car – tires, hubcaps, brakes, mirrors, steering wheel, motor, frame — back to its origin. You will find poisoned rivers, bulldozed forests, toxified air, and dynamited mountains.
Read the rest at Sierra Nevada Ally