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July 01, 2008

Electric cars aren’t the answer

The Star’s unqualified support for electric vehicles (6/30, Opinion, “All-electric vehicles hold great promise”) reminds me of the recent ethanol bandwagon.

You do not discuss the fact that switching from gasoline to electric vehicles will require a massive increase in electricity production, production you have fought in the recent past.

Furthermore, you do not discuss the carbon footprint of the increased electricity production. While the electricity leaving the car’s battery is emission-free, the means of producing that electricity most often is not. How does that carbon output compare with gasoline or diesel? How much coal is being burned to travel 100 miles?

Who is going to pay for the massive new power generation necessary? Shouldn’t those costs be included in the $27,000 retail price of the electric car? What about the cost of replacement batteries? The cost of disposal of the dead batteries? How about the lost gas tax that won’t be available to fund highway repair? Where is that money going to come from?

Electric cars are shortsighted solution.

Scott Bielicki
Overland Park

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