The electric car is coming!

Over the past year or so, I have heard a lot of talk about the next coming of electric cars. Automakers are rolling them out at car shows, and cities are building the infrastructure to support them. But I have yet to see a single electric car on the road. What is the deal? Are electric cars coming? From what I have heard and read, it appears as though they are coming, but slowly (see Electric Cars are Coming! and Top 10 electric cars coming to US in 2009/2010).

Every time you bring up the issue of electric cars, someone is bound to point out that plug-in electric cars are not the environmental solution that everyone thinks they are. This is true. For example, what do we do with dead batteries, and what about the power that will be needed when 50,000 of these are rolling on the streets? (see Plug-In Hybrids Could Require 160 New Power Plants By 2030 (Or None At All and Plug-In Hybrids Use Over 17 Times More Water Than Regular Cars, Researchers Say). Since such a large portion of US power generation comes from coal, the increasing use of plug-in hybrid and electric cars will require serious consideration of other energy sources (for an example, see How Solar Panels Could Power 90% of US Transportation).

My recommendation: Get yourself a plug-in hybrid as soon as they become available, and then put solar panels on your roof.

Posted in Beyond Parking on Dec 11, 2009

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