The electric car won’t get us very far – by Bjorn Lomborg (Financial Post – November 26, 2020)

Electric cars will achieve only tiny emissions savings at a very high price

In a move to jump-start the market for electric cars in Quebec, the government of Premier François Legault this month announced a ban on the sale of new gas-powered cars from 2035.

Similarly, leaders across the rich world, including U.S. president-elect Joe Biden and U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who just announced an even more ambitious deadline of 2030, promise lavish carrots along with sticks to outlaw gasoline cars.

Unfortunately, electric cars will achieve only tiny emissions savings at a very high price. Electric cars are certainly fun, but almost everywhere cost more across their lifetime than their gasoline counterparts.

That is why large subsidies are needed. And consumers are still anxious because of the short range and long recharging times. Despite the U.S. handing out up to US$10,000 for each electric car, less than 0.5 per cent of its cars are battery-electric.

Almost all the support goes to the rich. And 90 per cent of electric-car owners also have a fossil-fuel car that they drive farther. Indeed, electric vehicles are mostly a “second car” used for shorter trips and virtue signalling.

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