Why Electric Cars Will Never Become A Popular Phenomenon
Many automobile enthusiasts believe that the electric car is the wave of the future that will help save the environment while expanding the availability of private transport to the world's growing middle class. They are likely wrong on both counts.
Not too long ago a dinner guest at a party I attended told me that my concern about the peaking of global oil production was misplaced. Didn't I know that the electric car was already on its way? That a lot of smart people were involved in making it a reality before too long? That the main problem of charging on long trips had already been solved with battery switching stations that could now be deployed?
I registered my skepticism that the electric car would ever become a widespread phenomenon. I cited resource constraints for key metals needed for batteries and the length of time needed to turn over the existing car fleet--around 17 years in the United States, for example. That assumes, of course, that the necessary infrastructure to produce such a fleet is already in place, which it isn't and won't be for some time, if ever.
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