The bad press on electric vehicles....

The bad press on electric vehicles....

I am fully poised to place my order this month.. an avid EV supporter.
At work this week they posted a poll on our intranet site asking about EV interest and one colleague referenced this article.

do you believe any of this? Is this all B.S.?

I hope it's inaccurate as hell.
Can anyone refute these points?

Don't call troll on me.. check my other posts.. I love this car and want it to be successful.

David59 | 10 juillet 2013

At 50,000 miles the EV matches the ICE vehicle and at 90,000 miles the EV has a "Carbon Footprint" that is 24% less than the ICE car. At that rate, if it is a linear relationship, at 130,000 miles the EV has a 48% smaller footprint and at 170,000 it would be 72% less impact. Since I typically run my cars to about 200,000 miles I think the EV is still the way to go.
I think someone may be writing a poison pen article about the EV. It isn't hard to guess what might be motivating them to do such a thing.

SamO | 10 juillet 2013

This is the best science to date we have on EVs.

State of Charge: Electric Vehicles’ Global Warming Emissions and Fuel-Cost Savings Across the United States

"Electric cars produce lower global warming emissions and cost significantly less to fuel than the average compact gasoline-powered vehicle."

cloroxbb | 10 juillet 2013

The commenters on that article are worse than the article. It's amazing what people will believe without doing any research.

RedShift | 10 juillet 2013

Article assumes batteries aren't recycled. Wrong.

Assuming their numbers are accurate, "only 24%" less carbon footprint is an attempt to minimize.

IOW, typical BS from the usual suspects.

AmpedRealtor | 10 juillet 2013

Breitbart, are you kidding? That is the most extreme, politically conservative blog today. Why anyone would pay attention to what these tools have to say is beyond me.

carlk | 10 juillet 2013

Funny thing is people who use this to argue against EV are usually the same people who actually deny men caused global warming. They really have to stretch the facts to fit their conclusion. Lithium batteries last much longer than 50,000 miles, not to mention the batteries are recyclable (Elon has proposed to use old batteries as energy storage for solar power station) and lithium in the batteries are recyclable too.

CO2 are not the only emission from ICE cars. Try to start your ICE car in a closed garage for a minute and smell what they put out in the air we all breath. Make sure you turn the engine off soon or it will be the last time you do it.

And of course EVs do not rely on foreign oil and will not cause military actions and casualties. | 10 juillet 2013

Yeah, I am not sure I would look to Briebart for a balanced perspective. :)


unclegeek | 10 juillet 2013

This is all great stuff... I knew you more experienced folks would have good feedback.

kawaiia | 10 juillet 2013

Fox news are their partners, enough said!

techmaven | 10 juillet 2013

Yes, the underlying research is wrong. It's a lie to apply that research to Tesla.

Read the underlying research paper - it's using the wrong kind of motor (which weighs over 1,000 pounds). It's using the wrong assumptions for any number of things.

lolachampcar | 10 juillet 2013

That is Faux Knows

mrspaghetti | 10 juillet 2013

Who cares anyway? The Model S is the Car of the Year. It is awesome in every way.

What you do as an individual will have absolutely no impact on the planet in the larger scheme of things either way, so buy one according to whether you consider the awesomeness worth the asking price. Then enjoy the G-forces as you drive your Tesla and sleep soundly in your insignificance to the environment. (But please not at the same time.)

moorelin | 10 juillet 2013

This is a detailed and very balanced discussion of MS carbon footprint (answer to the question in the title is NO):

oildeathspiral | 10 juillet 2013

The article itself says EVs produce less CO2 than ICEs over any reasonable period of ownership so I don't see why they'd use that to make their anti-EV case. And that assumes the grid won't get cleaner, which in fact it is.

For those of us who's enthusiasm for EVs in general and Tesla in particular has nothing to do with GHG but with the inherently better car EVs are and the pro-US/anti-Putin et al economic and military benefit of 100% domestic energy, there is no argument.

As a registered Republican, I can tell you that the hatred for EVs based on government financial incentives and anything that liberals like as espoused by many vocal Republicans and conservatives should not be ascribed to all or even the majority of them. However, for those on the right who so proclaim their patriotism, their dishonest attacks on EVs are a direct refutation of what they claim to believe as well as their integrity.

ppape | 10 juillet 2013

My unscientific reply to this post is: This article PROVES to me EV's are making a statement! They are becoming significant and posing a threat to a 100 year old technology who's time is coming to an end. It proves to me what Tesla is doing is working! The little pebble is starting to ripple into big waves!

Did anybody really think that big oil would slink away into the night and let EV's become the next dominant technology? Me neither.

Would GM (Bob Lutz) have come out with the Volt without the Roadster? Not likely as stated by Lutz. Would we have the Leaf? probably not. See the movie 'Revenge of the Electric Car' for insightful details.

Tesla is stirring the pot!! They are making waves. Others will join them, compete against them or bad mouth them and their technology.

Even to the unscientific mind, this article just doesn't make sense.

I know your scared, Breitbart.....and you should be! There is a new sheriff (tecnology) in town and same ole, same ole, just isn't gonna cut it anymore.

Still grinning!
Jackie :-)

jonesxander | 10 juillet 2013

Great so they finally concede that YES, global warming is real.'s cause by those EVil electric vehicles!! *insert villainous laughter*

Haha. least we won one point lol.

sia | 10 juillet 2013

Great responses!

The article references a study by Bjorn Lomborg's Copenhagen Consensus Centre, which has connections to big oil:

TeslaSvein63 | 10 juillet 2013

You should not listen to all this shit. Think by yourself. To produce 1 liter of gasoline, they have to use 4.5 kw of electric power

lolachampcar | 10 juillet 2013

Time to loose the label. I'm conservative by nature which is having less and less to do with the success of Rove (or Carville for that matter) and the like reshaping a party.

We should all teach our kids to think for themselves. As I tell my daughter, if you are going to have to pay for a mistake, make it your own mistake.

sia | 10 juillet 2013


You make a very good point. It would be better to keep politics (and especially labels) out of these forums.

I think the Tesla brand appeals to all folks who are critical thinkers.

stimeygee | 10 juillet 2013

The article doesn't just reference climate change skeptic Lomborg. Its entirely based on him. And he's a climate change skeptic. So draw your own conclusions.

sia | 10 juillet 2013

+1 @stimeygee

stsanford | 10 juillet 2013

Again, the more I read you, the more I like you ;-)
I'm also a fellow conservative by nature, not necessarily the party of today...

It would be better to keep politics (and especially labels) out of these forums.

I think the Tesla brand appeals to all folks who are critical thinkers.

I agree whole-heartedly... I'm doing much to promote Tesla and the success of EV in general by talking it up with my friends, coworkers, clients, etc. It is a technology whose time is drawing near, and the Model S and Gen III will help make it a reality. Let's enjoy the "big tent"

dirkhh | 10 juillet 2013

Being conservative or progressive, atheist or evangelical... what does this matter in a car forum?
This is a forum where we discuss topics around a simply amazing car. About the things we love, the things that bug us. Let's please keep politics and religion to other forums.

sxross | 10 juillet 2013

This argument has been advanced before and will be advanced again. There's nothing to be done about it because it is human nature to "cherry pick" data to support a hypothesis. It would be nice to presume journalists rise to a higher level, but in some cases they do not.

This particular argument is one where I believe the data surrounding manufacture, supply and maintenance of EVs has been analyzed from a number of different angles and the most pessimistic numbers for each factor selected. It's a better story, right? Those suckers actually went out and bought one of those "green" EVs. Joke is on them. But that's not necessarily true.

The other side of the coin really would be to analyze the manufacture, supply and maintenance of ICE vehicles. We're all pretty familiar with the Combustion == CO2 bit. But there are tons of other factors related to (as some articles have pointed out) extraction, refinement, transportation of fossil fuels. These may or may not contribute to environmental factors but they are typically disregarded in this discussion. Further, the simple act of pumping gas on a hot day allows some evaporation into the atmosphere. That's why California has such strict tolerances for nozzle collars on filler hoses.

But there are other factors as you age an ICE vehicle. They have batteries too. The batteries typically last no more than 7 years. It might not be as much of an environmental load per vehicle, but when you multiply the environmental cost of battery manufacture and disposal by the number of ICE vehicles on the road, it becomes significant.

Disposal and replenishment of crankcase and transmission oil is an ongoing service item. Typically, these don't burn but that doesn't make them zero-impact to the environment.

There are many ways to look at the "apples-to-apples" comparison, but I just don't think you can do one. You can try to quantify it by the number of kWh you use, but I don't think that exactly predicts the future impact of the vehicle. Neither does it take into account many of the factors outside of pure emissions observations inherent in an ICE vehicle.

As much as we love to be adored when we drive our Teslas around, we also have to accept the mantle of pioneers at the same time. And pioneers get shot full of arrows. I made the considered judgement based on the data available at the time that the Tesla Model S was a superior machine to anything else I might acquire in terms of performance, comfort, environmental friendliness, and operational cost. But I won't kid anybody that I'm making money on the deal. Neither hybrids nor EVs pencil out in the black on the balance sheet as compared to a low-priced ICE. My judgement was that this was a "good thing" and nothing I've seen thus far leads me to believe I've been bamboozled.

Just my $.02

sharpe222 | 10 juillet 2013

I want everyone to buy Tesla's regardless of political views but having a rational discussion about the trash that is on Drudge or Breitbart is not possable.

AlMc | 10 juillet 2013

Third rail topics: Religion, Politics and 'How to raise your children'

stsanford | 10 juillet 2013
Third rail topics: Religion, Politics and 'How to raise your children'

Thank you.. Perfect..

GReese | 10 juillet 2013

If it's on, it should not be believed.

End of story.

cb9 | 10 juillet 2013

+1 lolachampcar and oildeathspiral
When people ask about my politics, I tell them I am a recovering republican, but "conservative by nature" is even better, let's conserve the environment and our history of innovation.

And I find it really refreshing that this community can discuss and defend our support for this comapny and its technology with facts in a bipartisan, rational way.

RedShift | 10 juillet 2013

OK, it's refreshing to hear about conservatives talking about conservation. ( environmental )

If that's the definition put a 'conservative' label on me, by all means. I do detest labels though.


If we ever meet, our wavelengths would match very well.

docdac | 10 juillet 2013

@stsanford - well said! Agree with keeping politics and labels off this forum. All critical thinking car guys/gals should feel welcome and not painted with a broad brush.

gill_sans | 10 juillet 2013

mrspaghetti What you do as an individual will have absolutely no impact on the planet in the larger scheme of things...

I disagree. Elon Musk is one man, and look at the global impact that he has had already. People's minds change and attitudes shift when they notice others holding and stating different beliefs and behaving differently. Every one of us who buys and drives a Tesla makes it OK and normal for those around us who pay attention (and Tesla cars are hard not to notice) to do the same.

George Marshall comes to mind:

shop | 10 juillet 2013

Who cares about that article? Open your eyes and nose. EV = zero emission. ICE = poisonous emissions (don't leave car running in your garage!). EVs are a lot more efficient energy-wise than ICE, that's why the Tesla S gets a 89 mpg-e rating.

The only reason, Btw, that conservative blogs don't like EVs is the government subsidies, which are substantial. But you can have a discussion about the merits of that without having to cherry pick data about environmental benefits.

Nothing to get worked up over - the iPad had some pretty bad press when announced and see how well that worked! | 10 juillet 2013

These types of articles peddling FUD always seem to increase before qrtrly earnings reports and other anticipated bumps to the TSLA stock price. If you follow the money back from these groups it's usually either cover for shorts or big oil interests funding this crap.

cfOH | 10 juillet 2013

The Forums Pledge
I, [state your name], do solemnly swear to keep my politics and my religion to myself at all times in order to foster and sustain the Tesla community of owners and fans.

SamO | 10 juillet 2013


How do you keep climate change to yourself when it has become a politicized issue.

The science isn't even in dispute, but all members of a certain party (cough, cough) seem to believe that Jesus will sweep into town and carry everyone to heaven if we destroy the habitability of the planet.

RedShift | 10 juillet 2013


Exactly. It's not even up for debate. There is consensus among scientists. But then some folks would like to redefine what 'science' actually means....

It makes me sad.

wolfpv | 10 juillet 2013

If you have any question about either the net cost or the environmental impact of your Tesla... get some solar panels. I just did, and they're generating enough power to cover the car and my house. Net cost was $14K, when you count the reduction in my tax bill (thank you, fellow taxpayers).

Bottom line - no more questions about whether I'm just pushing my pollution somewhere else. Solar is the perfect compliment to your Model S, regardless of your religion, political affiliation, favorite news conglomerate, views on global warming...

shop | 10 juillet 2013

Redshift, samosan: you guys sound like the Catholic Church telling Galileo how the earth and the sun interact.

cfOH | 11 juillet 2013

@Samosam: I have my opinions, but prefer to save them for venues where they're most relevant. I didn't always do that, but now see the value in it. Focus is good; purposeless enmity is not.

pebell | 11 juillet 2013

I think it was Mark Twain who said: there's lies, damned lies, and statistics. Meaning that when you cherry pick the data you use, and make gross assumptions about if and how well that data applies to the subject at hand, you can "prove" about anything with any data.

Total chain efficiency and environmental impact for both EV and ICE vehicles can't be calculated, and even if so, would only be valid for a very short period of time because on all fronts, improvements big and small are constantly being implemented.

But one thing is indisputable. If they invent a better ICE engine that has 50% better efficiency and generates 50% less pollution, it will _only_ benefit the new cars that are fitted with it. It will do _nothing_ to improve the billions and billions of ICE cars already on the road. Whereas, if in X years time we have managed to clean up electricity production by 50%, each and every EV already on the road will benefit from that.

No matter which way you turn it, a centralized problem is easier to fix than a problem distributed to billions of different locations.

tobi_ger | 11 juillet 2013

pebell +1

Philip2 | 11 juillet 2013

"As a registered Republican, I can tell you that the hatred for EVs based on government financial incentives and anything that liberals like as espoused by many vocal Republicans and conservatives should not be ascribed to all or even the majority of them. However, for those on the right who so proclaim their patriotism, their dishonest attacks on EVs are a direct refutation of what they claim to believe as well as their integrity."

What people tend to forget is that the oil industry in the US is heavily subsidized by the government as well. Without the subsidies gas would easily be the same or even higher than what it sells in Europe. The $$ provided to the oil industry is significant greater than what is provided to the green energy industry.

That being said, if one has solar panels & then use wind energy (where the states allow it) the carbon footprint of a Tesla Model S is significantly reduced!

RedShift | 11 juillet 2013


Comparing me to a Catholic Church?? Guffaw!!!!!

I am everything any religious nut is not, be assured.

AmpedRealtor | 11 juillet 2013

A certain segment of our population always loves to mention that green industries get too many incentives and breaks from the government, which couldn't be farther from the truth. After all, one of the biggest criticisms against Tesla was that it got a loan from the government and that the federal and state governments are giving tax credits to buyers. Well let's see... Tesla borrowed $465M which it has paid back in full and with interest. What remains are tax credits from various states and the federal government. Oh but how awful it is that we give tax credits to incentivize people to buy EVs, how dare our tax dollars subsidize green energy! Except that our tax dollars already heavily subsidize big oil to the tune of over $600M in tax breaks EVERY YEAR that never have to be paid back.

So Tesla pays back every dime of the $465M they borrowed from Uncle Sam, get no ongoing tax breaks like big oil gets, and yet somehow Tesla is the bad guy for getting all of these handouts from the government? The only ones getting a benefit now are the customers through federal and state tax credits. If every Model S sold this year gets a $7,500 federal tax credit, that is going to cost the federal government a total of $150M. But probably half of those Model S vehicles will end up in Europe and won't be subject to a US tax credit.

So who is really costing tax payers more... big oil or Tesla?

tobi_ger | 11 juillet 2013

...and I had thought those $600M would go directly to Congress members, must have mixed that up. ;)

AmpedRealtor | 11 juillet 2013

@ tobi_ger, oh they do... just not right away :)

SamO | 11 juillet 2013


Go get a clue. I've tried to be respectful to fools claiming that the "deniers" are being prosecuted. What a bunch of crap. But likening me and almost every scientist in the world to the inquisition . . . too much.

There's only ONE lobby denying science. That's the fossil fuel industry.

I'm FOR thinking. Deniers . . . not so much.

But I won't back down on this thread or any other from anyone pushing FUD about the reality.

Don't believe, respect or know me? OK. How about Elon Musk:

"“If you were to ask any scientist, ‘Are you absolutely certain’ about anything, they would say, ‘Well, no. There’s a .001 percent chance it could be different.’ So it’s better to actually say, ‘Look, how certain are you that it is not catastrophic?’ And then you’ll get the correct answer,”

How certain are YOU that it is not catastrophic?

docdac | 11 juillet 2013

Chill out, guy. Live and let live.