Monday, February 20, 2012

EVs and Air Pollution in China

A common critique of vehicle electrification is that it simply shifts emissions from tailpipes to powerplants. While a host of studies have shown that EVs still have lower lifecycle emissions in the US, a recent report from University of Tennessee suggests that the coal-dependent Chinese power grid may mean that EVs in China actually have higher fine-particulate emissions than their gasoline counterparts. The report, which has garnered some press, looks at both the makeup of Chinese generation as well as the proximity of the population to the plants.

Of course, EVs offer some additional benefits as well in terms of energy security, and it could be argued that point source pollution (e.g., powerplants) are easier to regulate and clean than non-point sources (e.g,. vehicles). It's a good discussion topic, in any case.

1 comment:

  1. I think the main concern on the environment impacts of EVs in China is the pollution discharge during the producing process. Because producing battery not just results in carbon emission but also causes the discharge of many other air and water pollutants. At the same time, the environmental management and implementation capacity in China is week. The total real pollusion from EVs might be higher than what is expected now and is more concentrated in some particular areas