We need to be honest. There is no such thing as a completely green car. It might run clean and produce no harmful emissions. But the way it’s manufactured and the impact its batteries have on the environment are certainly far from being perfectly green. Across their full life cycle, EVs are more environmentally friendly than their internal combustion engine (ICE) counterparts and, once they’re on the market, they will contribute significantly to a drop in carbon dioxide emissions. But to make them as green as possible, we need to make sure that:
- the manufacturing processes are as close to zero-emissions as possible,
- the batteries are made to last a very long time,
- the cars themselves are extremely efficient, preserving the life of the batteries further, and
- we find ways to recycle old batteries for a closed-loop economy.
We can’t go back in time and change what’s been done, so we need to make even better choices now. Using what we have to the best of our abilities, we can contribute to a significant reduction in greenhouse emissions, while providing customers with cars that are affordable and environmentally friendly. Making EVs is just the first step. Improving them is going to be an ongoing responsibility for the whole vehicle industry.
More efficient use
The move towards electric vehicles is an opportunity for different sectors, such as energy and transport, to work together to develop new EV technologies. It would help expand the talent pool and make ground-breaking solutions more likely. This would benefit everyone involved, including the environment.
Cross-sector collaboration is already happening, but we must continue to promote and develop it. There is still some belief that this would be going against free-market and competition. But such collaborations are mutually beneficial and don’t affect the fundamental relationships of competitors.
What’s more, this is not the time for industrial secrecy but for improving and expanding cooperation. We simply cannot afford not to work together. Car batteries are far from perfect. They need an improved life (and a smaller size), and combined industry efforts might yield impressive results.
Batteries themselves are not the only issue. New technologies that improve vehicle efficiency and extend battery life (such as our eDTSTM technology, which improves efficiency by at least 15%) will need to be used in all EVs to help them not only overtake ICE vehicles in performance and price but also to improve the EVs themselves.
After all, what’s the point of having a great, long-lasting battery, if the vehicle itself uses the battery too quickly and shortens its lifespan? This is a chance to be even greener. A more efficient use of batteries would mean greener EVs. And batteries that last longer take the pressure off raw materials, manufacturing, and recycling.
With the right and more efficient motor technology, manufacturers can reduce the size (and therefore the cost) of the battery pack, meet consumer preferences for size and range, make EVs more affordable to build, and start making profits while making the EVs more environmentally friendly.
This blog post is an excerpt from the “Towards a Greener Future with Electric Vehicles” whitepaper. To read more, you can download it here.
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