Since electric cars are increasingly on our streets and in the media, deal with the LCA of these Stromer. First of all: The battery production is the Achilles heel of electric cars and undoubtedly a large burden for the environment. This is partly due to the necessary raw materials, such as cobalt, copper, Lithium or Nickel that are mined under partly precarious conditions in third world countries.

in Order to increase the sustainability, want a VW (the group will bring in the next few years, dozens of new electric models on the road) the avoidance and reduction of CO2-emissions as well as compliance with social standards promote. “Sustainability standards for our suppliers, a binding selection criterion, such as quality or price,” explains Marco Philippi, head of strategy, group procurement at VW. “Violations and abuses, we are tracking consistently.” In other words, If the suppliers do not comply with the VW standard, you get from the wolf burgers, no more orders.

150 kilos of CO2 per kilo watt hour

The provision of Raw materials makes up only a part of the environmental balance of the batteries. The much bigger part, namely, 50 to 65 percent, it falls back to the energy-intensive production. But here, the study of divergence between the results. The reason is that battery and electric car maker out of the back, no concrete Numbers. Depending on the study, the watt-hour (kWh) will be emitted per kilogram of the battery pack 50 to 200 kilos of CO2. It is from one of the experts and scientists today realistic average of 150 pounds per kWh, can be calculated when an electric car is actually a comparable gasoline or Diesel in terms of environmental overhauled balance sheet.

Before the battery of electric cars are actually recycled, offense, according to the experts of 20 years and more. Virtually all manufacturers of E-cars on their batteries, a warranty of eight years, even after ten years, modern batteries have a capacity of around 70 to 80 percent. Only when this limit is exceeded, does not apply close to the battery as a waste – but still a long way to be technically defective. Then, they can exist for years in the “Second Life”, such as a stationary intermediate storage in the home to buffer electricity from photovoltaic systems. Only if here, too, the conclusion is, must be recycled in the battery really. From the raw material and point of view, costs are mainly a matter of metals such as Nickel, cobalt or copper recover – the materials are separated under a great heat of each other. According to the Recycling company for less than one percent of residue remains at the end.

electric car versus gas

The German magazine, Edison has made the following calculations: the starting point of an electric car in the compact class with a 28 kWh battery that comes with a CO2 backpack of 4.2 tonnes from the battery production into the race. Its consumption is realistic 14,3 kWh/100 km. For comparison, a gasoline and a diesel model of the same class are used, which consume 7.0 l (petrol) or 5.5 l (Diesel) on 100 kilometers.

During the calculation for the production of a kilowatt-hour of power 500 grams of CO2 emissions (German electricity mix 2017) estimated – in Switzerland, the emissions are likely to be thanks to more hydropower is significantly lower – the combustion of a Litre of petrol is 2.3 kg CO2 per one Liter of Diesel, there are 2.65 kg. In this calculation example, the E-car has about 40’000 kilometers, until it is overtaken by the gasoline engine in the LCA. In a Diesel there are almost 50’000 kilometers.

The electricity needed by electric cars is overestimated. Energy expert Dr. Gil Georges of the ETH Zurich: “If we look far into the future and say, we electrify the 4.5 million cars on our roads, we are talking about 12 to 14 terawatt-hours of additional electricity demand. This would correspond to the today’s level of consumption of Switzerland, 15 to 25 percent has been measured.” For comparison: industry and trade, 60 percent of the total electricity need. More NUCLEAR power, more electric cars so not needed.

E-cars are not always in a climate-friendly

on average, drivers of the electric car is about three to five years, more climate-friendly. One thing is clear: The more dirty, the battery production, or the cleaner the gas, the longer it takes me, until the Stromer clean. And for friends of the Extreme: against Tesla’s flagship Model S with a huge 100-kWh battery pack that causes in the production of 15 tonnes of CO2, a Porsche Cayenne Turbo, the Tesla is the Porsche in this Edison example, at around 50’000 km is obtained. Climate-friendly, both vehicles are not, the electric car is, sooner or later, nevertheless in the front.

conclusion: this is a Truly climate-friendly, no Auto – mobility has its price. However, electric cars have significantly more potential to reduce CO2 emissions in production and operation, namely, when more green power is used.