The curse of 'white oil': electric vehicles' dirty secret

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I just want to add that those "foreign wars for oil" cost both blood and treasure.

My daughter is a teacher and she sees first hand kids who have lost parents in those wars and kids who have parents that have physically and mental injuries too, sometimes both. There are many horror stories.

Middle East oil is very costly, and the sooner we can free ourselves the better. Not only for the environment but for the military, their families and their communities.
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FutureBoy

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I just want to add that those "foreign wars for oil" cost both blood and treasure.

My daughter is a teacher and she sees first hand kids who have lost parents in those wars and kids who have parents that have physically and mental injuries too, sometimes both. There are many horror stories.

Middle East oil is very costly, and the sooner we can free ourselves the better. Not only for the environment but for the military, their families and their communities.
This is probably a topic for a whole new site as it really has nothing to do with EVs though EVs are a good start.

Basically I’m wondering what will happen world wide as we move away from oil as the main driver of energy policy. This is going to take a while yet but at some point the US will be able to supply all its internal oil needs with internal sources of oil. We might not exclusively use internal oil because of costs or other reasons. But if we get to the point where we don’t need any Middle East oil, I would imagine that we will greatly reduce our military presence there. There will be desirable and less desirable consequences from that.

I would imagine that troop withdrawal would be seen as a positive result for terror networks but without a boogey man to fight they might have recruitment issues so they might enhance their overseas efforts against us.

Also with US troop withdrawals, our blood losses would be lowered but there will probably be new and more intense wars in the Middle East including border disputes, religious wars, and strongman standoffs. So I’m guessing that the US will end up selling even more weapons.

Additional changes will be around emigration due to people escaping war zones, climate change refugees, and those escaping governments that are failing due to lost oil revenues.

Given all the above, I’m thinking that moving off oil is going to end up being very dangerous, highly problematic, and possibly even worse of a situation than we currently have in a worldwide sense.

I do think that moving off oil is a necessary step. Staying on oil will eventually kill us all. But getting off oil isn’t a piece of happy go lucky cake either. The coming decades are going to be one dangerous tightrope walk of possible death. Without a net. Between 2 skyscrapers. Over a canyon. With river rapids at the bottom. Populated by crocodiles. And Komodo dragons. Oh, and we are covered in poop. With tons of flies distracting us from the walk.

But I’m sure everything will be ok. ;)
 
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HaulingAss

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This article is straight-up fear mongering and some of its numbers are wrong.
Well, EV's do cause environmental harm on "an industrial scale". All industries do!

What matters is if it's better than the current status quo. And this has been studied extensively. Oil production causes far more damage to planet earth than lithium mining ever will!

Global warming - the gift that keeps on giving!
 

SolarWizard

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That's only true if you scrap it.

If you sell it on the used market, someone else will keep driving it until it's used up.

The same is true for used cars, too.
I wasn’t referring to used car valuation
 

Crissa

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Even if you sell a use ICE car, if someone's driving it, it's not replacing a newer, nicer car in general.

People usually choose the best thing they can afford, and the least things get knocked off the bottom. Fleet effect.

-Crissa
 

Elsem

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It’s worth noting that there have been, and continue to be, technological breakthroughs in how lithium is mined. One such company, Standard Lithium (full disclosure, I own shares) extracts lithium from existing process brine. Elon has actually tweeted about it in the past. In any case, there is no additional environmental impact... probably shouldn’t say “no”, as I’m sure someone could find some impact.
 

Luke42

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I wasn’t referring to used car valuation
Not was I.

You said it would be a waste to replace an ICE Razor. It may be a waste of money, but the vehicle itself is not wasted.

Many people fall into a the cognitive shortcut of assuming that a vehicle is scrapped after they're done with it, even though they know otherwise. I've certainly made this mental mistake mistake many times.

Our economic system discourages wasting old vehicles. Most vehicles serve out their full entire design-life. They pass through several owners -- and are then parted out and recycled by junkyards. So, the vehicle is not wasted, even if you tire of it and sell/trade it after a short time.

Whether it's worth the cost to replace it is a separate question. I can't answer that question for you. Whether you'd prefer to keep it and use it up yourself is up to you. I can't (and won't) tell you what to do in this respect.

But, if traded your gas Razor in on an electric version, your old one would not be wasted in environmental or practical terms. Other people would drive it until it reaches its natural demise.

The same is true for cars, too. If you buy a Model 3, her tired of it, and trade it in on something else in 6 months, that Model 3 will mostly likely be on the road for it's entire 15-20 year service life. It's not wasted in practical terms.
 

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This article is straight-up fear mongering and some of its numbers are wrong.

The fact is, a car uses its pile of lithium for its entire lifetime while an ICE car goes through that weight in gasoline -itself a massive result of desulfurization and distilling - two to four times a year during its lifetime.

The article worried about annually mining 700,000 tons of lithium... whereas the world uses twice that in oil every day.

The impact of mining lithium is not even in the same scale.

-Crissa
Shipping tankers provide the MOST pollution relative to ALL else- man they are GROSS and probably make more people sick...who live around them.

Thankfully, we can STOP buying from INSANE communist China and help reduce that pollution!
 

FutureBoy

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Shipping tankers provide the MOST pollution relative to ALL else- man they are GROSS and probably make more people sick...who live around them.

Thankfully, we can STOP buying from INSANE communist China and help reduce that pollution!
Um............

It’s nice that Tesla vehicles will be built in the US so people in North (and possibly South) America can get a Tesla vehicle from there. But I’m not sure how that addresses or even reduces any of the myriad other products that are being shipped from China.

I’m assuming that the CT (wolverine?) will also end up getting built in China so that there is no need to ship CTs from North America to Asia. That would keep a very minor portion of pollution from being generated. The ships after all already have to make that trip to go pick up their next load. So the difference in pollution would just be the extra weight of the vehicles.

So how does pollution in shipping get addressed by Tesla building in the US?
 

CyberDingo

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If "MY" CT (hopefully Wolverine), is built in China...that IS a deal breaker.
Order cancelled, AND shares sold!
 

FutureBoy

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If "MY" CT (hopefully Wolverine), is built in China...that IS a deal breaker.
Order cancelled, AND shares sold!
I'm guessing that the Wolverine will get built in Germany. It would not surprise me at all if the China plant designed an even smaller CT type vehicle. East Asia has a ton of wonderful Kei cars (and trucks, and pickups, etc) that are immensely usable and practical. It wouldn't surprise me if a Tesla pickup was built that was a little bigger than a Kei pickup. Kei cars have special tax and licensing in Japan (where they originated) and have specific max size, displacement, and power output requirements. I don't believe there are any EV equivalent specifications but something that approximate size would be immensely useful and practical throughout Asia.

If not built on that size scale then a pickup that is a little larger might be the ticket. Thing is that many of the roads in Asia are as ancient as can be and are not made to fit a full-size pickup. I suppose that is similar to many towns in Europe though. So maybe a Wolverine size (depending on how that turns out). But also Elon seems to like having individual geographies design the kind of vehicle that works for them.

From the YT videos I've been watching of off-roaders, there seem to be a plethora of huge trucks being used in Australia. So if CT's are going to be imported to Australia it would not surprise me if they were primarily the US original version. At least till a factory gets built in Australia. After that who knows what will be built there.

But hey, what do I know.
 

jerhenderson

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This article is straight-up fear mongering and some of its numbers are wrong.

The fact is, a car uses its pile of lithium for its entire lifetime while an ICE car goes through that weight in gasoline -itself a massive result of desulfurization and distilling - two to four times a year during its lifetime.

The article worried about annually mining 700,000 tons of lithium... whereas the world uses twice that in oil every day.

The impact of mining lithium is not even in the same scale.

-Crissa
they're operating under the view that mining for ICE resources isn't environmentally impactful.
 

jerhenderson

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λίθος means "stone" thus lithium is named because it is found in the crust. The lithosphere is called the lithosphere because it is made of rock. Not because some of those rocks contain lithium.
yeah but they do contain lithium.
 
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