Have you ever considered what the toll of trying to produce electric batteries to power green cars might be?
How about what it will take to manufacture the components of the future green energy utopia that Joe Biden and his fellow Progressives are promising? If you don’t know, don’t worry because the Manhattan Contrarian does know and provides many answers.
Wind turbines, solar panels, electric cars, and so forth — there is lots of steel, other metals, and silica involved that all need to be melted at high temperatures to get formed into the devices.
How are “they” going to achieve their goal at reasonable cost using just the wind and sun as energy sources?” Again, Francis Menton gives the answer:
Up to now, the main strategy has been to buy most of the devices from China, where they are made largely using energy from coal. Out of sight, out of mind. But both Europe and the U.S. have made an effort to get at least somewhat into the game of making these things. Europe finds itself leading the acceleration into the green energy wall, with the intentional suppression of fossil fuel production and now the substantial cutoff of Russian gas supplies causing sharp spikes in the prices of both gas and electricity.
Who’d have thunk it? Making solar panels and big grid-scale batteries might be “energy intensive”? Unless power prices start to return to normal, many large projects are going to be mothballed.
It’s pretty ironic, as Mr. Menton tells questioning readers that it takes a lot of carbon to achieve “decarbonization.”
A Threat to EVs?
Meanwhile, back in the real world …
The Guardian reported (September 12) that Europeans have begun to fret that high electricity prices are threatening the whole idea of electric cars.
Electric car owners, whether charging their cars at home or through contracts with charging operators, have seen price rises of 10% or more. Further price rises are expected, owing to the fact that the price of electricity is linked to that of gas, which has become ever scarcer since Russia turned off its gas supplies to Germany almost two weeks ago. Allego, one of Germany’s largest charging station operators, raised its prices at the start of this month from 43 cents a kilowatt hour to 47 cents. Express charging, via a continuous current, has risen from 65 to 70 cents a kilowatt hour while the fastest, so-called ultra-fast charging, has gone up from 68 cents to 75 cents a kilowatt hour.
According to the automobile economist Stefan Bratzel, the development is an immediate threat to the industry. . . . “If electric cars become more expensive to use, the surge in electric mobility is in danger of collapsing. . . .
Soaring Energy Costs Threatening the Future of EVs?
Mr. Menton tells the story of Britishvolt, the UK’s first “gigafactory.” Britishvolt has been on the road to making big batteries to back up the renewable energy future with substantial backing from the UK government.
… but apparently it’s not enough. With European energy prices spiking, investors are heading for the exits.
According to The Times (London) (15 October) now that Britishvolt is “running out of money,” the gigafactory needs an infusion of some 200 million pounds by year-end to avoid going bust:
The company building Britain’s first battery “gigafactory” is in emergency talks with investors including a major carmaker amid fears it could run out of money before the end of the year. Britishvolt, a government-backed developer of battery cell technologies, is reportedly holding talks with seven potential investors after recent market turmoil led to prospective backers pulling out of its latest funding round.
Will Americans continue down the green energy rabbit hole?
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