How Green Are Electric Vehicles?

In short: Very green. But plug-in cars still have environmental effects. Here’s a guide to the main issues and how they might be addressed.

#air-pollution, #alternative-and-renewable-energy, #batteries, #carbon-dioxide, #conservation-of-resources, #electric-and-hybrid-vehicles, #energy-efficiency, #environment, #fuel-efficiency, #fuel-emissions-transportation, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #human-rights-and-human-rights-violations, #mines-and-mining, #oil-petroleum-and-gasoline, #pollution, #recycling-of-waste-materials, #water-pollution

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Consumer Reports creates a “green choice” for vehicle reviews

A picture of a car made out of a leaf, with flowers coming out of the tailpipe

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images)

Almost one in four Americans are very concerned about vehicle tailpipe emissions, according to a survey conducted in January by the publication Consumer Reports. Nearly half of survey respondents also said that fuel economy is very important when considering a vehicle to buy or lease, and 27 percent were very worried about car exhaust contributing to climate change.

Consequently, Consumer Reports will now grade cars according to their environmental impact. It has launched a new “green choice” rating, identified by a green leaf icon, to help people quickly identify vehicles with the best fuel efficiency and lowest contributions to atmospheric CO2 levels and smog formation.

Interestingly, the survey also shows that nearly half of car buyers will use information about a vehicle’s emissions to inform their buying—but only if they know where to look. Unfortunately, more than 50 percent are unaware that this information is displayed prominently on the Monroney sticker.

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#cars, #consumer-reports, #fuel-efficiency, #vehicle-pollution

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There’s One Big Problem With Electric Cars

They’re still cars. Technology can’t cure America of its addiction to the automobile.

#fuel-efficiency, #fuel-emissions-transportation, #general-motors, #infrastructure-public-works, #regulation-and-deregulation-of-industry, #tesla-motors-inc, #united-states-politics-and-government

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Automakers Drop Efforts to Derail California Climate Rules

Momentum is shifting toward a clean-car future as more automakers end their legal efforts to block California’s tough fuel economy standards.

#automobiles, #biden-joseph-r-jr, #buttigieg-pete-1982, #environment, #fuel-efficiency, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #presidential-election-of-2020, #united-states-politics-and-government

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After a Bruising Year, the Oil Industry Confronts a Diminished Future

Big oil companies lost billions in 2020 because of the pandemic and face broad questions about how they will adapt to climate change and regulations.

#automobiles, #biden-joseph-r-jr, #bp-plc, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #electric-and-hybrid-vehicles, #europe, #exxon-mobil-corp, #fuel-efficiency, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #looney-bernard-1970, #oil-petroleum-and-gasoline, #prices-fares-fees-and-rates, #united-states, #woods-darren-w-1965

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G.M. and the Electric-Car Comeback

The end of the gasoline-powered car will transform the economy.

#alternative-and-renewable-energy, #automobiles, #barra-mary-t, #biden-joseph-r-jr, #electric-and-hybrid-vehicles, #electric-light-and-power, #energy-efficiency, #fuel-efficiency, #fuel-emissions-transportation, #general-motors, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #oil-petroleum-and-gasoline, #united-states

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G.M. Announcement Shakes Up U.S. Automakers’ Transition to Electric Cars

Every carmaker is trying to figure out how to make the leap before governments force it and Tesla and other start-ups lure away drivers.

#automobiles, #barra-mary-t, #biden-joseph-r-jr, #china, #dingell-deborah, #electric-and-hybrid-vehicles, #environmental-protection-agency, #ford-motor-co, #fuel-efficiency, #fuel-emissions-transportation, #general-motors, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #tesla-motors-inc, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-politics-and-government, #volkswagen-ag

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Even for Bargain Hunters, Green Cars Make Sense

Electric cars are an even better value than I understood when I first bought one.

#fuel-efficiency, #fuel-emissions-transportation, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #tax-credits-deductions-and-exemptions

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Buttigieg’s Climate Promises: What Could He Actually Do?

The Transportation Department, which holds sway over planes, trains and automobiles, faces limits on how it spends money. Still, here are five possible steps.

#air-pollution, #appointments-and-executive-changes, #automobiles, #buttigieg-pete-1982, #electric-and-hybrid-vehicles, #environment, #federal-aid-us, #fuel-efficiency, #fuel-emissions-transportation, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #infrastructure-public-works, #law-and-legislation, #roads-and-traffic, #transit-systems, #transportation, #transportation-department-us, #united-states-politics-and-government

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One of Biden’s first climate actions looks at fuel efficiency rollback

US President Joe Biden sits in the Oval Office as he signs a series of orders at the White House in Washington, DC, after being sworn in at the US Capitol on January 20, 2021.

Enlarge / US President Joe Biden sits in the Oval Office as he signs a series of orders at the White House in Washington, DC, after being sworn in at the US Capitol on January 20, 2021. (credit: JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images)

One of the first official actions taken by President Joe Biden after his inauguration on January 20 means the almost-certain demise of a Trump-era plan to weaken future fuel efficiency regulations. Among Biden’s instructions to federal agencies was an “Executive Order on Protecting Public Health and the Environment and Restoring Science to Tackle the Climate Crisis.”

This executive order tells federal agencies that environmental justice is a priority—one that will now be guided by scientific evidence. Additionally, the heads of each agency will have to review any regulations, policies, or other actions taken between January 20, 2017 and January 20, 2021 that are inconsistent with that goal. And there’s a particular call-out for the US Environmental Protection Agency’s recent actions to weaken US fuel efficiency standards over the coming few years, as well as the agency’s attempt to neuter California’s power to regulate air pollution.

The previous administration’s attack on clean air and fuel efficiency began almost immediately and culminated with a pair of actions over the past 16 months. In September 2019 the EPA announced that it was revoking a waiver that has allowed California to set and enforce its own tougher air pollution standards within the state’s borders. Then in March 2020 the EPA published a new fuel efficiency rule for passenger cars and light trucks for model years 2021-2026 that significantly weakened fleet efficiency targets mandated by the Obama administration.

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#california-air-resources-board, #cars, #climate-change, #environmental-protection-agency, #fuel-economy, #fuel-efficiency, #president-joseph-biden, #us-epa

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What Will Happen to Your Next Home if Builders Get Their Way?

A lobby is trying to block building codes that would help fight climate change.

#building-construction, #energy-efficiency, #fuel-efficiency, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #international-code-council, #miami-fla, #national-assn-of-home-builders, #polis-jared-s-1975, #real-estate-and-housing-residential, #weather

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Toyota to Pay a Record Fine for a Decade of Clean Air Act Violations

Toyota’s $180 million settlement with the federal government follows a series of emissions-related scandals in the auto industry.

#air-pollution, #automobiles, #energy-efficiency, #environment, #fines-penalties, #fuel-efficiency, #fuel-emissions-transportation, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #manhattan-nyc, #oil-petroleum-and-gasoline, #strauss-audrey-attorney, #toyota-motor-corp

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US vehicle fuel efficiency effectively stalled over the last 10 years

The average car or light truck on US roads is 11.8 years old.

Enlarge / The average car or light truck on US roads is 11.8 years old. (credit: Harvey Schwartz | Getty Images)

The last few years have seen a rather bitter fight over vehicle pollution between the federal government and California, with automakers taking sides. In August 2012, during the Obama administration, the US Environmental Protection Agency announced new standards aiming to reach a target of 54.4mpg (4.3l/100km). But with the change of administration at the beginning of 2017 came a change in those priorities.

At the time, I described the new target as “pathetic.” But here’s the truly scary thing—as unambitious as it was, it would still represent a 50 percent increase in efficiency compared to the existing US light vehicle fleet. According to a new analysis at Green Car Congress, if you analyze the average miles driven per gallon of fuel each year, the US has made almost no progress between 2008 and 2019.

The Environmental Protection Agency versus California

Shortly after the beginning of the Trump administration, the EPA gave notice that it was less interested in cleaning up vehicle emissions. Additionally, the EPA called out California, which has a waiver that gives its California Air Resources Board the power to regulate air pollution from vehicles within the state’s borders. (Colorado, Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington also participate in the so-called Zero Emissions Vehicle program, taking their lead from CARB.)

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#cars, #epa, #fuel-economy, #fuel-efficiency, #policy

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To Cut Emissions to Zero, U.S. Needs to Make Big Changes in Next 10 Years

New research details major infrastructure work — including immense construction projects — that would need to start right away to achieve Biden’s goal of zero emissions by 2050.

#alternative-and-renewable-energy, #batteries, #environment, #fuel-efficiency, #fuel-emissions-transportation, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #nuclear-energy, #oil-petroleum-and-gasoline, #wind-power

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Oil Refineries See Profit in Turning Kitchen Grease Into Diesel

Struggling energy companies are increasing the production of renewable diesel, which can reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

#alternative-and-renewable-energy, #automobiles, #bioenergy-and-biofuels, #california, #cvr-energy, #electric-and-hybrid-vehicles, #fuel-efficiency, #fuel-emissions-transportation, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #oil-petroleum-and-gasoline, #refineries, #restaurants, #united-states, #united-states-politics-and-government, #valero-energy-corporation, #waste-materials-and-disposal

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G.M. Drops Its Support for Trump Climate Rollbacks and Aligns With Biden

General Motors said it would no longer back President Trump’s lawsuit seeking to strip California of the power to set fuel economy standards.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #electric-and-hybrid-vehicles, #environment, #environmental-protection-agency, #fuel-efficiency, #general-motors, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-politics-and-government

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How Green Is That Electric Car? And When It Hits 100 M.P.H.?

The Tesla Model S and the Porsche Taycan give environmentally conscious speedsters an outlet for their desires.

#automobiles, #electric-and-hybrid-vehicles, #fuel-efficiency, #fuel-emissions-transportation, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #porsche-ag, #tesla-motors-inc

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How to Reverse Course on Trump’s Environmental Damage

The next president can undo some of the recent efforts to weaken environmental protections. But it’ll take work.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #environmental-protection-agency, #executive-orders-and-memorandums, #fuel-efficiency, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #obama-barack, #oil-petroleum-and-gasoline, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-politics-and-government

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E.P.A. Inspector General to Investigate Trump’s Biggest Climate Rollback

The agency’s watchdog office said Monday it would investigate whether the reversal of Obama-era fuel efficiency standards violated government rules.

#environment, #environmental-protection-agency, #fuel-efficiency, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #inspectors-general, #regulation-and-deregulation-of-industry, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-politics-and-government

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California Set to Require Zero-Emissions Trucks

The new rule, expected Thursday, would mean more than half of trucks sold in the state must be zero-emissions by 2035, and all of them by 2045.

#air-pollution, #buses, #california, #california-air-resources-board, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #e-commerce, #electric-and-hybrid-vehicles, #environment, #factories-and-manufacturing, #fuel-efficiency, #fuel-emissions-transportation, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #lobbying-and-lobbyists, #los-angeles-calif, #nichols-mary-d, #oil-petroleum-and-gasoline, #regulation-and-deregulation-of-industry, #san-bernardino-calif, #states-us, #transit-systems, #trucks-and-trucking

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Prosecutor in Roger Stone Case Will Testify About Barr’s Intervention

The prosecutor is one of two Justice Department officials coming forward whom Democrats are calling whistle-blowers.

#attorneys-general, #barr-william-p, #fuel-efficiency, #house-committee-on-the-judiciary, #justice-department, #mueller-robert-s-iii, #nadler-jerrold, #russian-interference-in-2016-us-elections-and-ties-to-trump-associates, #special-prosecutors-independent-counsel, #stone-roger-j-jr, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-politics-and-government, #zelinsky-aaron-s-j

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Pandemic Lockdowns Lead to Less Traffic and Better Air

Fewer cars on the road during the pandemic has meant cleaner air, but not necessarily fewer traffic deaths. Can we have both?

#air-pollution, #bicycles-and-bicycling, #fuel-efficiency, #fuel-emissions-transportation, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #quarantine-life-and-culture, #speed-limits-and-speeding, #traffic-accidents-and-safety, #urban-areas, #walking

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States Sue to Block Trump From Weakening Fuel Economy Rules

At stake in the lawsuit is the single biggest effort by the United States to fight the climate crisis.

#automobiles, #becerra-xavier, #california, #fuel-efficiency, #fuel-emissions-transportation, #regulation-and-deregulation-of-industry, #united-states-politics-and-government

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Electric Trucks Will Be True Signal of Electric Vehicle Era

Electric Hummers and Cybertrucks, as well as the next generation of S.U.V.s, will signal the arrival of the E.V. era in America if they start to sell in big numbers.

#batteries, #chevrolet-division-of-general-motors-corp, #electric-and-hybrid-vehicles, #ford-motor-co, #fuel-efficiency, #general-motors, #hummer-division-of-general-motors-corp, #rivian-automotive-llc, #scaringe-r-j, #sports-utility-vehicles-and-light-trucks, #tesla-motors-inc

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Trump Administration, in Biggest Environmental Rollback, to Announce Auto Pollution Rules

The Trump administration has finalized new fuel efficiency standards, lowering expectations from 54 miles per gallon by 2025 to 40 miles a gallon by 2030.

#automobiles, #environment, #fuel-efficiency, #fuel-emissions-transportation, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-politics-and-government

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