A car industry-commissioned report on the CO2 impact of electric vehicles (EVs) has courted criticism, following allegations it overstated the emissions impact of EVs compared to internal combustion engine cars and was produced by a PR firm run from an address allegedly owned by Aston Martin’s director of government and corporate affairs. The report, which lists Aston Martin, Honda, Bosch, and McLaren among its contributors, was covered by a number of major newspapers over the weekend. It claims that when full lifecycle emissions are taken into account an EV has to be driven for 48,000 miles before it starts to deliver lower emissions than a petrol car – meaning that it would take EV owners roughly six years before their zero emission vehicle was ‘greener’ than a fossil fuel alternative. However, the report’s analysis and conclusions were quickly challenged by Auke Hoekstra, senior advisor on electric mobility at the Eindhoven Technical University in the Netherlands, who dubbed it a “misleading brochure” that underestimates combustion engine emissions, excludes petrol supply chain emissions from the analysis, fails to adequately take future reductions in the carbon intensity of electricity mix into account, and takes a lifecycle study of a single car manufactured in China – the Polestar 2 – and applies it to all EVs. The correct figure for emissions breakeven for the EV and internal combustion engine cars analysed is closer to 16,000 miles, he calculated.
Business Green 1st Dec 2020 read more »