The fossil-fuel elephant in the electrification room – by Rick Mills (Ahead of the Herd – February 5, 2023)


The transition from fossil fuels to electrified transportation and renewable energy is predicated on two assumptions: that there will be enough raw materials to make this change; and that eventually we won’t require fossil fuels anymore. Both of these claims are false.

The United States and its allies, such as Canada, the UK, the European Union, Australia, Japan and South Korea, face a dilemma when it comes to the global electrification of the transportation system and the switch from fossil fuels to cleaner forms of energy.

On the one hand, we want everything to be clean, green and non-polluting, with COP26-inspired goals of achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050; and several countries aiming to close the chapter on fossil-fuel-powered vehicles, including the United States which is seeking to make half of the country’s auto fleet electric by 2030.

Yet in going “all-electric”, we are also hurting ourselves, because by lessening investment in fossil fuels, we are making the price of fuel (crude oil and its refined products, like gasoline) and petroleum by-products, of which there are literally thousands, more expensive. We’re heading down the road of spending more money on renewables than fossil fuels, but at what cost to the consumer?

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