It is not that easy when it comes to reducing the footprint caused by carbon emissions. Even something like fitting solar panels, or operating by use of hydrogen fuel can be greenwashed more than green itself. It is harder when making the right choices in life, especially if you look at them at a closer approach. While electric vehicles appear to be attractive in the first spot, it becomes clear that they have a carbon trail and some side effects during the extraction process.
The main problem encompassing rare earth metals and precious minerals is that the required ingredients in electric vehicle batteries are the multi-layered one. In turn, the cost of the EVs to reduce, making them accessible to everyone. However, there is more impact posed along the supply chain of electric vehicles. The dominion of lithium-ion batteries in China has made Beijing indirectly rule the electric vehicle market for the past years, resulting in shifting in the manufacturing of the vehicles to Asia. In the meantime, cobalt is a costly metal, and its composition in the batteries of the electric vehicle portrays a full forty percent of the car’s sum value.
There is the fact that those metals do not fall under the category of renewables, as their mining is always green. The surging use of lithium-ion batteries as the primary source in electronics such as phones, computers, and electric vehicles has contributed to an increase of fifty-eight percent in lithium extraction since 2010. That appears to be a near-term danger of lithium extraction; however, there is another effect posed to the environment.
Additionally, the extraction process needs large capacities of waters, and that might result in aquifer exhaustion and affect ecosystems at a more significant rate. Those ecosystems are more delicate, and they must be handled with care.
The emerging question is, is that necessary? Electric vehicles seem to save us as they are the best solutions to the impacts of climate change.
A life cycle examination of emissions highlights three stages, which are; The Manufacturing phase, the use phase, and the recycling phase. In this case, what matters is the company that manufactured your electric vehicle and the company that produced the electricity powering the electric car. For instance, in New Zealand, eighty-two percent of electrical energy comes from renewable sources. Since those sources of renewable electricity provide the vehicle’s charge, then electric cars suit best in New Zealand. That is not easy at appears, and that is why complete life cycle examination comes in to answer our question.