Biden's E.V. Numbers Don't Add Up

Tom Finnerty20 Apr, 2023 2 Min Read
Enjoy the ride.

Dominic Pino has a smart post at NR's "Capital Matters" blog entitled "The Government’s Own Numbers Show Biden’s EV Mandate Is Crazy," in which he compares the Environmental Protection Agency's extremely unrealistic Electric Vehicle expectations with the rather-more-sober projections of the Department of Energy's Energy Information Administration.

Pino explains that the E.P.A. has issued new emissions standards with the goal of ensuring that "67 percent of new vehicles to have zero tailpipe emissions by 2032." Charging those E.V.s will require a lot more electricity than we're currently producing. To figure out where it will come from, Pino checks out the somewhat less ideological (emphasis on "somewhat) E.I.A.'s Annual Energy Outlook which is filled with long-term energy forecasts. That report projects that "U.S. electricity-generation capacity will roughly double by 2050" with oil and gas capacity projected to increase by 40 percent, and wind and solar to increase by 158 percent and 636 percent, respectively, with solar becoming the largest single source of electricity generation. These would be unprecedented gains to say the least, and -- considering the amount of land required for solar panels -- they are probably unrealistic.

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Still, you will note that this 100 percent increase in power generation will not arrive until nearly two decades after 2032, and even then by the government's own reckoning will have a sizeable oil and gas component. That's not the green future environmentalist utopians are envisioning. Moreover, the Annual Energy Outlook puts forward its own E.V. projections, and they are wildly out-of-step with those of the E.P.A.

Even worse for the environmentalists, the two departments have different definitions of what constitutes an E.V. The E.I.A. includes hybrids in their definition, whereas the E.P.A. only recognizes entirely battery powered vehicles.

Excluding plug-in hybrids, the E.I.A. projects only 14 percent adoption of battery-electric cars by 2050 in the reference scenario and 24 percent in the most extreme scenario of high oil prices.

Which is to say, in Pino's words, "The rush to EVs combined with a rush to renewable energy, on the scale the Biden administration wants, is so extreme that even the government’s own numbers don’t support it." In other words, this isn't going to happen; its pure fantasy. But that doesn't mean that the government's E.V. mandates aren't going to make our lives a whole lot more difficult over the next several years. Buckle up.

Tom Finnerty writes from New England and Ontario.


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