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EV's pollution?

Discussion in 'Tesla' started by Potential EV, Dec 21, 2016.

  1. Potential EV

    Potential EV Member

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    Hello Everyone,

    I consider buying an EV(preferably S or 3) and have a question regarding pollution of EV's.

    I have read that producing Li-ion Batteries is a very polluting process and that highly toxic metals are used.
    so is producing a battery for an EV that will eventually will need to be replaced at some point does not negate from the zero emissions the car gives(plus the fact that my electricity will be mostly produced with coal and natural gas)?

    one of the reasons I consider an EV is reducing my CO2 emissions so it is really important to me, please answer objectively

    Thank you for your time!
     
  2. Chopr147

    Chopr147 Active Member

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    Zero emissions, Tesla's catch-phrase. :)
    This question has gone back and forth here but in total an EV is way,way less polluting. Way less!
    Consider the batteries can be recycled many times over as well.
    And it is such a great car the lack of CO2 is like a bonus :)
     
  3. Potential EV

    Potential EV Member

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    about recycling, does telsa have any plans regarding that? haven't heard they recycled any batteries so far
     
  4. jelloslug

    jelloslug Active Member

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    Most of the propaganda about Li-ion battery production is leftover from the debunked study about the Prius nickel-metal hydride battery production. Lithium is harvested from evaporating water from giant brine pools.
     
  5. Potential EV

    Potential EV Member

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    I read specifically about Li-ion though, are you sure about that?
     
  6. geoffreak

    geoffreak Model 3 Reservation Holder

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    The Gigafactory will handle recycling and will supposedly reuse 100% of the materials of a battery pack. I can't find an original source for this, so if someone could link it, that would be great.
     
  7. Fallenone

    Fallenone Active Member

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    If it's CO2 you are concerned, coal fire plant powered or not, EV is superior in lower emission through the whole life cycle compared to ICE under the same use pattern (miles driven for example). Regarding to heavy metals, it is arguably that EV may be more polluting than ICE. But the data supporting this conclusion are mostly from studies on the Leaf battery 6 years ago (more or less around that time) without any recycling consideration. Since the kWh/kg has greatly improved from a 6 years old Leaf to a modern Tesla, and Tesla does have plan to recycle their batteries, my guess is Tesla's EV will do no more harm than ICE in this area.
     
  8. Chopr147

    Chopr147 Active Member

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    Tesla has mentioned they plan on recycling ALL of the battery parts and do it in the Gigafactory. To then be used in energy storage. I remember reading about it and Elon stated this himself in a video but I do not have the source. Just more EV info that stuck to my brain. Not much does but I remember that :)
     
  9. Potential EV

    Potential EV Member

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    On the other hand the leaf batteries were and are much smaller than tesla's
    is there any reliable data from tesla even about the process of producing the batteries and its CO2 footprint?
     
  10. abasile

    abasile Independent Software Eng.

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    It may be worth having a look at this report by the Union of Concerned Scientists, which indicates that battery manufacturing (including the Tesla Model S battery pack) comprises a pretty small fraction of vehicle lifecycle emissions (which are lower than comparable ICE cars): http://www.ucsusa.org/sites/default/files/attach/2015/11/Cleaner-Cars-from-Cradle-to-Grave-full-report.pdf

    If you're able to do so, in addition to acquiring an EV, you could install solar PV to offset your EV's energy use. I believe the payback, in terms of greenhouse gas emissions, is no more than two or three years. This should improve as solar panels, and their manufacturing processes, continue to become more efficient.
     
    • Informative x 1
  11. Fallenone

    Fallenone Active Member

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    However the specific energy in battery packs used in Tesla now is close to 2 times that of in 2010 Leaf (EMvalley - Electromobility scientists in Silicon Valley), and Model 3 would be even 30% higher than the current ones (Tesla Model 3’s battery will be 30% more energy dense than the Model S’ original pack). Like almost anything else, the techniques in producing more efficient products are less polluting than the ones before. And it also comes down to comparison. What would the Leaf owner buy if he/she did not buy the Leaf? It's not likely to be a luxury car. So considering the leather and wood in luxury cars (many lack in Tesla) and the pollution associated with them, the difference becomes smaller if not reversed in Tesla's case.

    I don't think Tesla released any concrete data about their production process. But they said multiple time the GF will be a raw material (ore level) in, battery packs out. Waste treatment plants are in the schematics. They also have intention of recycling the battery packs as JB said it would be cheaper to do this since the battery packs are basically super high quality ores in some sense.
     
  12. MorrisonHiker

    MorrisonHiker S 90D 17.32.6ca28227

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    I remember Elon mentioning battery recycling at the Gigafactory Grand Opening event. He pointed out that with gas, everything is burned and goes into the atmosphere. With batteries, everything remains in the battery and the materials aren't used up. They can be recycled over and over again.


    I know Tesla recently started selling their cars in Spain. If you are considering a Tesla, you can get a referral link at TeslaInventory.com that will save you 1,000 € off a new Tesla. Once Inventory and CPO are available in Spain, you'll be able to search the listings there and the link will be good for Inventory models as well. Buena suerte!
     
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  13. Potential EV

    Potential EV Member

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    Thank you all,

    EV's theoretically make sense I guess some people just have certain interests.
    and solar panels is a consideration(although it is not cheap)
     
  14. jelloslug

    jelloslug Active Member

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    Post a link to what you are reading about.
     
  15. 3Victoria

    3Victoria Active Member

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    There is a lot of misinformation out there, since there are many groups that will be negatively effected by EV growth, and they amplify any disadvantage to EVs that they can come up with.

    Consider (partial list):
    1. producing a gallon of gas uses as much electricity as an EV uses to travel the same distance.
    2. Lithium is not ''mined", and the other (larger) components of lithium battery are copper and carbon.
    3. Coal and gas production releases ++ CO2 and other pollutants.
    4. The power system is becoming greener, so EVs carbon footprint is improving all the time.
    5. EVs do not have any tailpipe pollutants ... Look at China's air quality partly due to their ICE cars.

    So, EVs are greener, but Teslas are good even if you don't care about that.
     
  16. ShockOnT

    ShockOnT Quickish

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    When I drop my daughters off at school I see a line of puffing exhaust pipes at knee-level, blowing carbon monoxide and diesel particulates into the air the kids are breathing.

    Can you imagine building a factory and trying to get permission to have your chimneys at knee-level every 5 metres along the edge of the busiest parts of town?
     
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