To combat climate change, electric cars have to be cheaper
Most drivers of electric cars are wealthy, and most electric cars are luxury.
Why it matters: To effectively combat climate change, the opposite needs to happen: electric cars need to become affordable and broadly appealing so the masses can and want to buy them. Only with mass adoption will heat-trapping emissions steeply decline in America’s most polluting sector.
The big picture: The stereotype of rich Californians driving their Teslas isn’t a bad thing—at least not yet. It’s part of the cycle of new technology costs. Wealthy drivers are helping drive down the cost of new electric-car technologies by being able and willing (and subsidized by governments) to be early adopters of these vehicles.
-"Now we’re at a point where the technology is there, we do need to start thinking about how we make sure this transition benefits everyone,” said Scott Hardman, a professional researcher at Institute of Transportation Studies at University of California, Davis.
-“But I don’t think things are going in the right direction,” he added, before sharing the following statistical snapshots.
By the numbers: Of the 11 newest battery electric vehicles introduced in the U.S. between 2018 and 2020, eight are luxury vehicles.
-The average starting price of an electric car has increased over the past eight years, despite battery costs plummeting. The average price in 2012 was about $39,000. Last year, it was $52,000. (The cost of gas-powered cars is generally trending up too.)
-The average salary of an electric-car owner in California is $174,000, more than double the national average.
-Teslas, which make up more than 70% of the electric-car market, have even wealthier drivers, with average incomes of more than $300,000, Hardman’s research has found. (Multiple requests for comment to Tesla were not returned.)#globalwarming #climatechange #carboncompensation #bluesky #climateemergency #climatecrisis #blueskye
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