We’ve all read the stories of how electric cars running off coal fired plants, will be the menace du jour. We’ve also read how electric cars can’t go further than 60 mph (100 km/h) per charge, and of course the well known fact that electric cars simply fly apart at speeds over 30 mph (50 km/h) – but of course electric cars can’t go that fast anyway.
I mean, it must all be true; I read it on the Internet.
Opponents of electric vehicles don’t often have a lot of ammunition when it comes to their reasoning so crazy mantras like those are annoyingly common around the internet.
So our heartfelt thanks go out to those with the time and patience to either dispel these myths with solid, researched evidence, or simply those who post the myth-breaking results of their own electric car conversions.
Don’t get complacent though; Mack the Knife is back in town and his new anti-EV story is that a lithium shortage is in store for electric vehicles. This lithium shortage will mean the overnight death of the electric car industry, and we can all go back to the safety and comfort of expensive, oil burning, gas powered clunkers.
But what if it’s true? Not to worry, because as luck should have it, it’s all a myth.
Lithium happens to be the 33rd most abundant element on our planet, and there are mines available in every corner of the globe, allowing every country with reserves a great opportunity to boost their economy.
Don’t worry about it running out any time soon either. According to Chris Richter, an auto analyst with CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets in Tokyo, “Lithium is one of the more abundant elements in the Earth’s crust,” he says. “Of all the various problems with this technology, running out of lithium is not one of them.”
Worried about a lack of manufacturing supply? Don’t be. The New York consulting firm Gerson Lehrman Group estimates that even if half a million lithium powered EVs are produced in 2015, they’d use less than 10% of the last year’s lithium output. And output grows every year. No sweat.
For argument’s sake though, let’s play the Devil’s advocate. Let’s assume we never use any of the lithium-free battery designs being developed. How long will lithium last with the world’s electric fleet in, say, 2050?
According to the Argonne National Laboratory, lithium demand can be met in 2050, even with the rapid growth of electric vehicles. In fact, With material recycling, demand for virgin material in 2050 would be only about 4 times the current level.
Rightio. Now that’s debunked, what’s the next myth to crack? Anyone?