Electric vehicles, or EVs, use battery-powered motors. Some, such as the Nissan Leaf or Tesla Motors’ cars, are solely powered by electricity and must be periodically recharged. Others, known as “hybrid-electric” vehicles (HEVs), use a combination of electric motors and internal combustion engines powered either by gasoline or an alternative fuel. All of these offer benefits relative to petroleum-only transportation.
Driving more fuel-efficient cars and trucks can help to significantly reduce oil consumption and substantially reduce commuting costs.
- Hybrids are much more fuel-efficient than standard vehicles, and plug-ins offer even better fuel economy than regular hybrids.
- All electric vehicles avoid fuel altogether.
By delivering some or all of the necessary vehicle power through the electricity grid, hybrids and electric vehicles can help reduce not only gasoline consumption, but also the costly, cumbersome, and oil-consuming transportation of liquid fuels to consumers.
- Electric cars are powered by the existing grid that already provides electricity to our homes and businesses
- To increase personal convenience, electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids can be recharged at home
- Standard hybrids such as the Toyota Prius use much less fuel per mile traveled, reducing the demand for oil
Air quality is a major concern in urban areas, where high concentrations of airborne pollutants increase the incidence of upper respiratory system health ailments such as asthma. Electricity is generally produced away from population centers, and often with lower concentrations of greenhouse gas emissions per unit of energy.
- No to very low vehicle emissions help to improve air quality in cities and large metropolitan areas.
- Electricity can be generated from renewable sources such as hydro, solar and wind, or by nuclear energy, all of which significantly reduce carbon emissions from the energy sector.
- Hybrids and electric vehicles reduce the demand for greenhouse gas-intensive oil extraction.