Electric cars in question

IEEE article offers potential ecological downside to electric autos

Doubts about the overall ecological benefit of electric cars have been raised in a recent article published online by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers.

Citing a 2010 study by the National Academies, the article—written by Ozzie Zehner, currently a visiting professor at UC Berkeley’s Science, Technology & Society Center—noted that when one considers “the effects of vehicle construction, fuel extraction, refining, emissions, and other factors,” the lifetime health and environmental damages of electric cars “are actually greater than those of gasoline-powered cars.” Some of those damages result from the intensive mining of rare-earth metals for use in electric-car motor-magnets, as well as the extraction and refining of copper, lithium and nickel for electric-car batteries.

Go to www.tinyurl.com/electunclean to read the entire article.