Editor’s PickEnergy MarketsLow CarbonNet ZeroTop StoriesTransportation

“Electric vehicles not cost-effective for emissions reduction”

At The Big Zero Show, Nick Molden, Chief Executive Officer of Emissions Analytics Ltd, highlighted the pitfalls of relying solely on electric vehicles, noting their upfront CO2 costs and proposed a multi-technology path that includes hybrids and other alternatives

Electric vehicles are not cost-effective for emissions reduction.

That’s the suggestion from Nick Molden, Chief Executive Officer of Emissions Analytics Ltd who spoke at the Coventry Building Society Arena during the inaugural day of The Big Zero Show.

His presentation, titled “How We Can Actually Achieve Net Zero Transport, Not Just Officially,” explored the challenges of decarbonising the transportation sector.

Mr Molden noted a growing gap between public perception and the actual impact of electric vehicles (EVs).

“If you think specifically about the penetration of electric passenger cars, the sales of them are slowing, are stalling, they are softening and they are softening not because of misinformation.

“There’s a little bit about that. But fundamentally, they are softening because they are not a cost-effective way of reducing emissions.”

Molden provided a clear analysis: “As a country, we have spent roughly £12 billion subsidising electric vehicles, yet carbon dioxide emissions haven’t decreased; they have increased due to the substantial upfront carbon dioxide generated in EV production.”

He argued alternative technologies like full hybrids could have more significant emission reductions if similarly funded. “Subsidising five million hybrids could reduce fleet carbon dioxide emissions by about 5%. The timing is crucial; frontloading carbon dioxide emissions is a gamble on future savings.”

Molden criticised the current trajectory, likening it to the Dieselgate scandal.

“We are distorting the system by offshoring carbon dioxide emissions from electric vehicle production, misleadingly labelling them ‘zero emission’ on paper.”

To address these issues, Molden proposed a comprehensive approach: “We should onshore carbon dioxide emissions and consider a multi-technology path.

“Banning specific technologies is counterproductive. A fair market should inform consumers’ decisions based on their needs and environmental impact.”

He stressed the need to decarbonise the grid as the government’s most impactful action.

“Ambitious targets like achieving a decarbonised grid by 2030 may seem unrealistic but set the right goal. Focus should be on making the grid as green as possible.”

In closing, Molden cautioned against the simplistic promotion of battery electric vehicles (BEVs) without considering hidden risks and costs.

“We need to fix the rules of the game to align the decisions we’re making in transportation with what actually reduces carbon dioxide for the planet.

“Not for the UK factories, car factories, it is about the global economy. Total carbon dioxide that we as consumers, are emitting. And this is about engineering, this is about economics, this is about politics.”

Related Posts