“Peak ICE” Is Still Ahead of Us

In the first installment of this series, I made the case that a national mandate for the replacement of light-duty internal combustion engine vehicles (ICEVs) with electric vehicles (EVs) would be almost meaningless, from a greenhouse gas perspective.

My conclusion, based on fairly simple math, was that even in the most optimistic scenario — and even allowing for future advancements in technology that might substantially increase the benefits of EVs over ICEVs…

The best we could realistically hope for is perhaps a 1% – 1.5% reduction in global GHG output from universal adoption of EVs for everyday consumer use in America.

Again, don’t get me wrong: I have nothing against electric vehicles for those who want them. It’s a free country, right? Or at least it used to be, and it’s supposed to be.

But I do have something against our government forcing millions of Americans to adopt technology they don’t want — and that’ll hurt the nation’s security, along with some of its bedrock industries (like oil and cars) — under false pretenses. In fact, the textbook definition of “false pretenses” is to intentionally misrepresent facts or the truth for the purpose of extracting money or property from someone else…

And that’s exactly what’s going to happen if Joe Biden becomes president and if more radical Democrats get elected in the future. In true “let no crisis go to waste” form, the far-leftists who increasingly threaten to take control of this country are using false and misleading assertions about climate change to extract revenue, power, and votes from the populace.

To be clear: I’m not saying that climate change isn’t real, that it isn’t a crisis, or that it isn’t being caused or aggravated by mankind’s actions. I’m simply saying — as I always have…

The Democrats’ Green Screw Deal isn’t aimed at saving the planet — it’s aimed at taking your money and liberty

Beyond the high up-front expense to consumers in switching from ICEVs to EVs and the tremendous cost of the infrastructure needed to make electric cars truly viable for most Americans — every penny of which is going to come straight out of their pockets in extra taxes…

There are strategic and national security costs to consider here, too.

Namely, the fact that mass (read: mandatory) adoption of EVs would put America even deeper into China’s pockets and in bed with some very unsavory and unstable regimes around the world.

China is by far the world’s largest producer of batteries for electric vehicles, and that’s not likely to change anytime soon. They’re also among the world’s top five producers of manganese, another metal many EV batteries require. Gabon and South Africa are also on that list.

Cobalt is yet another vital EV battery metal, and over 60% of the world’s supply comes from the Democratic Republic of the Congo — where they use child labor in their cobalt mines (seriously, look it up). Also on the list of top 10 global cobalt producers are such stalwart U.S. allies as Russia, Cuba, and the ubiquitous China.

But didn’t we just see this movie?

I mean, if the coronavirus crisis hasn’t just proven to us that we’re far too reliant on foreign supply chains and manufacturing for the things we need, I don’t know what would. What happens when Washington forces us all to adopt EV technologies that we’re depending on other nations to build — or supply us with the parts and materials we need to build ourselves?

You think those countries won’t play that card? Especially China?

Again, I could go on and on with this stuff…

The bottom line is that electric vehicles aren’t a CO2 magic bullet, and they come with a lot of baggage. And aside from Tesla — which sold roughly 80% of U.S. EVs last year, and which I’d argue is more often a prestige purchase than a rolling pledge to the planet — Americans don’t really seem to want them all that much.

EV sales in America stalled by 12% in 2019, even with the rip-roaring economy, and Tesla propping up the sector. And in Q1 of 2020, they plummeted 33% from the previous quarter, while U.S. auto sales as a whole only dropped a little over 18%.

And even though EVs have been available on the U.S. market since around 2010, it wasn’t until 2018 that they finally crossed a million units — the vast majority of which were purchased using substantial government assistance. For comparison purposes, the total number of registered road vehicles in the U.S. in 2018 was over 273 million.

Translation…

In the U.S. so far, EVs seem to be more of a status, fashion, or political statement than an ecological imperative

This is plainly shown in Tesla’s overwhelming market share versus dozens of cheaper electric vehicle options that would be just as “beneficial” to the planet, many of which still carry substantial government purchase incentives.

But all these facts I’ve just laid out are not stopping Democrats in Washington from pushing forward with aggressive plans to outlaw the internal combustion engine in America, for all intents and purposes.

Joe Biden’s Plan for a Clean Energy Revolution and Environmental Justice plainly states that he’ll institute “rigorous new fuel economy standards aimed at ensuring 100% of new sales for light- and medium-duty vehicles will be electrified.”

The nearly $500 billion transportation-oriented INVEST in America Act Democrats in the House unveiled in June includes funds for “building out fueling infrastructure for low- and zero-emission vehicles.”

And on June 30, Pelosi and her cronies on the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis released their Congressional Action Plan for a Clean Energy Economy and Healthy, Resilient, and Just America (barf!), which contains this little gem:

“In order to fully decarbonize passenger vehicle travel given the average lifetime of vehicles, all newly sold passenger cars need to be electrified by around 2035.”

But does all that sound even remotely in line with what the bulk of the American people actually seem to want, based on their vehicle buying and usage trends?

Of course, it’s likely — almost inevitable — that EVs will begin to claim more market share in America over the coming years (they’ve really got nowhere to go but up)…

And that’s great. Viva la free market! But rendering the internal combustion engine obsolete anytime soon?

As Joe Biden might say, “Come on, man!”

In fact, one respected auto-market research firm is predicting that ICEVs will still represent 95% of vehicles in operation across the fruited plain in 2030…

And may not reach their raw-numbers peak in the U.S. until 2035!

According to Pelosi, they all need to be eradicated by then…

There is no way that happens unless radical Democrats force American car-buyers into a place they don’t seem to want to go of their own free will. And that’s exactly what Biden, AOC, Pelosi and friends will do, if we give them the power.

Our reward will be less freedom, fewer (yet more expensive — yay!) options in the vehicle marketplace, higher taxes, more regulation, shorter road trips…

And a planet that’s still getting warmer because we won’t do what really would help the greenhouse gas situation: Adopt a nuclear standard for grid electricity.

If liberals actually cared about climate change, they wouldn’t be forcing us to adopt EVs… They’d be forcing us to adopt nuclear power generation!

France has the world’s seventh-largest economy, yet only releases around 1% of global atmospheric carbon pollution. That’s because electric power plants are the world’s largest CO2 emitters…

And France derives approximately 75% of its grid power from zero-carbon-emission nuclear generation.

I haven’t done the math, but if the U.S. did the same thing with its grid, I’m certain it would have a much bigger impact on global atmospheric GHG than mandating EVs for consumer use in America. I’d also bet that if Washington simply stopped erecting roadblocks to nuclear energy, we could ramp up to a majority-nuke grid faster than we could eliminate light-duty ICEVs.

Think of all the jobs it would create, too! And if we coupled nuclear generation with wind, solar, and enhanced hydro-electric power (another article, coming someday), the United States could actually approach a carbon-neutral grid. A clean win, all the way around. But that doesn’t really matter to the Far Left in this country…

Because again, they can’t extract gobs of money or political power from the American people by doing it. Nor can they perpetually use the issue of climate change as a wedge to round up funding and drive liberal voting if we actually solve our part of the greenhouse gas emissions problem.

That’s how anyone who’s really thinking about this issue knows that EV adoption is a red herring. Its sole purpose is to facilitate the seizure of the greatest possible amount of liberty and lucre from the American people for no discernible effect to the climate — so they can demand more, and more, and more…

“It isn’t working because the Republicans stalled EVs too long,” they’ll shriek, before pivoting to, “Now we really have to take drastic action!”

That’s when they’ll ban meat, start rationing our still-dirty electricity, initiate a new SPV (Self-Powered Vehicle) standard to replace all those wasteful EVs that are overloading the power grid…

All the while finding find new and inventive ways to milk us for even more money in the name of “environmental justice.”

Welcome to the clean, green legacy of Joe Biden, America’s first puppet president.

Icily Yours,

Jim Amrhein

Jim Amrhein
Freedoms Editor, Whiskey & Gunpowder
WhiskeyAndGunpowderFeedback@StPaulResearch.com

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Jim Amrhein

Just like he was 15 years ago, when first he sullied the pages of the original Whiskey & Gunpowder e-Letter and various other forums, Jim is still ornery, opinionated, politically incorrect, and shamelessly patriotic. He’s also more convinced than ever before that government can’t do much of anything right — except expand in scope and...

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