The electric vehicle (EV) market making transportation as such a big part of consumers’ lives and constitutes a large portion of the economy in countries across the world. In the US, 70% of all oil consumed goes up for transportation. Passenger vehicles use 70% of transportation oil. Globally, a rise in the middle class of countries like China and India is causing demand for passenger vehicles and with it, demand for oil. By the next decade, we may see as many as 1.5 billion cars on the road, compared to 750 million in 2010. This high level of demand acts as both a challenge and an opportunity to capitalize on new vehicle technologies, and in the process, reap substantial economic development benefits. In a world where oil is a limited resource, an alternate source of transportation fuel is electricity which is not only a smart investment, but it is also an inevitable one. The switch to electric vehicles will generate economic development opportunities by not just improving quality of life but also reducing energy spending, and decreasing reliance on foreign oil.
The electricity for the vehicle will be obtained by 100% clean renewable generation and will not be generated using fossil fuels. It may not sound as a realistic assumption in many locations using 100% clean, renewable generation but this scenario simplifies the analysis, highlights the potential benefits of electric vehicles, and sets a goal for which to strive in the electrification of transportation.
The net energy savings for the electric vehicle will be $413 per year. Having a 10-year life vehicle, this will result in a cumulative savings of $4130 on energy costs. Electricity rates will likely be more stable than gasoline prices, so it is very possible that fuel savings will be significantly higher than the estimated value presented. A wide range exists in valuation of the estimated social cost of carbon. While it is accepted that the EPA number omits certain damages, researchers continue to try to ascertain a more comprehensive value. Researchers at Stanford recently modified an Integrated Assessment Model (IAM) to account for substantially slower economic growth rates associated with climate change, which impact poor countries most profoundly.
Studies have estimated that choosing to drive an electric vehicle (Nissan Leaf) instead of driving a comparable gasoline powered vehicle (Honda Civic) will result in a carbon emissions reduction of about 4,096 pounds per year.
As far as environmental and health issues concerned with emission of gas by oil pumped cars will also be reduced. Research has shown that children are more vulnerable to health impacts from emissions because of their physiology, because they are growing, and because they have higher breathing rates. The polluted particles of gas emissions causes cardiovascular harm, may cause cancer, may cause reproductive and developmental harm and is more likely to cause respiratory harm.