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Electric cars ‘hundreds of times’ more efficient than fossil fuel cars

New analysis reports find that battery electric vehicles are far better for the environment than petrol and diesel alternatives, cementing them as the only long-term transport option.

Electric cars are the future of commercial automobiles. Most developed nations are pledging to invest heavily within the next few decades and we’ve new evidence to suggest they’re absolutely the better option compared to diesel and petrol vehicles.

A new study by Transport and Environment reveals that traditionally fuelled cars use a significantly higher amount of resources to be produced and maintained, from production to eventual scrappage.

Only 30kg of raw material will be lost over the lifecycle of a lithium-ion battery used in electric cars. By comparison, over 17,000 litres of oil is used in a fossil fuelled engine over the same amount of time.

This finding is important because it challenges many valid criticism of electric vehicles and the environmental dangers of a ‘lithium’ gold rush.

There are significant hazards and pitfalls that could arise from an intense need for lithium and a ramp up of cobalt and nickel mining, but Transport and Environment argue these costs are far outweighed by our current oil extraction methods. To put things into context, one fossil fuel car burns enough resources to stack oil barrels 25 storeys high – an electric car uses a football sized amount of raw materials in comparison.

So, the good news here is that electric cars are definitely here to stay, and if most countries around the world adopt them as standard, we could see oil usage fall exponentially.

Keep in mind too that battery technology is expected to become more efficient and cheaper to produce in the coming years, requiring less raw materials. High recycling rates of scrapped cars may help to lower the demand further.

Battery cars are predicted to use 58% less energy than petrol cars over their lifetimes and emit 64% less carbon dioxide.

Whichever way you look at it, electric cars are far better for the environment than your grandad’s old wagon he keeps in the garage. It may be a while yet before we’re all sporting Teslas and queuing up at charging stations, but it could be closer than you think.