EV Dream Is More of A Nightmare for American Taxpayers

Tom Shepstone
Shepstone Management Company, Inc.

The EV dream is the subject of another wonderful Clear Energy Alliance video but a nightmare for taxpayers footing the bill for green virtue signaling.

Our friend Mark Mathis is out with another great video; this time on the subject of the EV dream the Obama administration tried to foist on all for the benefit of trust-funders and others of means who want the taxpayers to subsidize their green status symbols. It quickly gets to the root of what’s really happening as EV charging stations designed to accommodate the trendy pop up wherever skilled government grant experts are at work dispensing your money for feel good projects.

Here’s the video:

And, here’s Mark’s transcript:

Electric cars, or EVs if you like, are the future, right? They will be less expensive, cleaner for the environment, slow carbon dioxide emissions, and we will be more secure because we won’t be so dependent on oil. These are the things we are being told by politicians and activists. But is any of this actually true?

I won’t say I’m sorry to drain the juice from this electric dream, because I’m not. We’ve got way too many supposed leaders selling us stories that are much more complicated than their simple talking points. Let’s begin with this idea that EVs are the next big thing.

There are currently 4 million of them on the road but there are 1 billion vehicles, so they aren’t even one-half of one percent of the market. EVs are currently 2 percent of auto sales, but that’s largely because WE ARE ALL paying for them through massive taxpayer subsidies. The U.S. federal subsidy alone is $7,500 per vehicle. When China cut subsidies in half in June of 2019, EV sales plunged.

And who is buying all these EVs? The wealthy are. The Congressional Research Service reports that 80 percent of EV subsidies were claimed by those with household incomes of more than $100,000. That means, the rich man’s Tesla is partially paid for by all the rest of us.

Operating and maintaining an electric vehicle is cheaper. But you’ll need to own it for many years before you make up the extra expense of the original purchase. But if those subsidies are taken away, you’re paying significantly more than if you bought a vehicle that runs on fuel.

And who is going to pay to dispose of all the toxic batteries? Nobody knows. EV’s won’t meaningfully reduce our oil use either.

According to the Manhattan Institute’s Mark Mills, an all-EV America would barely trim 8 percent off world oil demand. Part of the reason is it takes a lot of oil-based energy to make batteries and much of our cars and trucks are made from oil and natural gas.

One thing many people are concerned about is carbon dioxide emissions. But EVs don’t help on that score either. Making batteries requires enormous amounts of mining and the construction of giant chemical factories. The CO2 produced making the batteries may actually be more than the CO2 saved by getting off gasoline and diesel.

China makes 60 percent of lithium ion batteries and will make 70 percent by 2021. As Mills points out, “Importing batteries manufactured on Asia’s coal-heavy grid means that consumers are just exporting carbon-dioxide emissions, along with jobs.” And don’t forget, the electricity used to power EV’s doesn’t just magically appear. In the U.S., fossil fuels generate almost 65 percent of electricity.

All of this comparing of EVs and traditional vehicles misses what is probably the most important factor in the electric vehicle discussion. China doesn’t just make most EV batteries. It also has a near monopoly on the entire supply chain used to make those batteries. It produces many rare earth metals and critical elements, and processes even more. Who thinks it’s a good idea to allow China to control world transportation?

We at CEA aren’t against electric vehicles. We just believe it’s important for people to consider the full picture. Massively ramping up the number of electric vehicles on the road doesn’t actually solve any problems, but it’s likely to create a few more that are much bigger.

We’re not opposed to the EV dream either. We’re just against making us all pay for it so a handful of trust-funders can parade around their subsidized green status symbols. After all, the EV dream is dependent upon natural gas, which is the only effective and reliable way to generate the electricity to power the EVs. We say go for it, but use your own money please, and don’t expect those of us who live in rural areas to give up our 4-wheel drive F-150s or Dodge Rams.

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4 thoughts on “EV Dream Is More of A Nightmare for American Taxpayers

  1. Again we ask: which uses less energy? Generating electricity from natural gas to run electric vehicles, or using natural gas to run the vehicle?

    And here is the next question: When in the middle of a blizzard which covers the northeast, with no sun and no wind generating electricity, who and what will provide us with the electricity to keep us warm, now that all homes and buildings have abandoned natural gas? When the non-existent storage batteries run out, do we simply say as Scrooge, in the Christmas Carol, said: ” If they are going to die, let them be quick about it, and reduce the surplus population”.

  2. What if they are charged with electricity from natural gas power plants ?? Will the environmentalists still embrace them ??

  3. Electric motors are a superior form of propulsion for several reasons, but I agree that EV’s should not be taxpayer subsidized. And they ARE currently owned primarily by wealthier posers…

    EV pros: no point source emissions, instant torque without transmissions, simpler and far more efficient than IC motors with way less waste heat, no energy consumed while stopped, regenerative braking, they’re very quiet.

    EV cons: expensive to buy and service, heavy, range limits/ range anxiety, charging time, limited charging infrastructure, toxic battery products and negligible recycling potential, very high part count in lithium ion packs, the myth that they’re green…

    EV’s are fossil fuel, nuke, and hydro powered in the US with precious little juice provided by renewables- which are also by no means 100% green. Nothing is. Hence the poser label above…

    I do believe we should transition to EV’s ( another leap in battery tech would help) but it’s going to take a couple more generations to build out the infrastructure and phase out our current vehicle stock. Factories need to be retooled, gas storage tanks need to be dug up and charging stations installed, more power plants and transmission lines must go in etc… it’s far more complicated than the Green New Deal nut jobs would have you believe.

    Natural gas and newer nuclear should and will play a central role in this process. It’s ultimately a better system than gasoline and diesel.

  4. Unfortunately, even EV’s like any other manufactured commodity is still dependent on fossil fuels for its parts, components, assembly and transportation to said virtue signaling customer.
    EV’s can be efficient as fleet vehicles where they have a predetermined route and can be charged when not in use. However, there are no plans to build out a redundant infrastructure to charge them. Ironically, such facilities would face opposition by the very same people who sing their praises. As my grandfather would say, “you are just shoveling poop* against the tide”

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