Recently, a huge number of people and places are talking about how good The Prius and other “environmentally friendly” some cars are. This is also what Toyota wants you to think. But seriously think again, because you aren’t saving any sap, you are one.
I’m asking you to think about this one. You are paying more for a battery, which is lithium. This has a finite number of charge dischage cycles, before it starts to degrade. No one knows exactly how long these car batteries will be around, but estimates say Prius owner’s will have to change their batteries every 4 years. The battery is anywhere between $3500 and $5000.
The process to make the battery is hurtful to the environment. To build this battery, you use energy from plants, which is burning coal. I am sure if you were to calculate this out, the emissions factor of creating a battery, and the emissions savings, you can see that the burning of coal is going to have a very large effect.
It also takes extended times to assemble these cars based on the fact that their is more equipment to install. This means the lighting and heating have to be on longer, polluting the environment more than a usual car.
Also, to dispose of these batteries that will only last 4 years will cost energy of trucks distributing, and landfill space. It will most likely cost you money, in which you will have to stay at your job, most likely later in the day, and use more lights so you can stay later.
This is why I find it strange that companies offer green discounts to their employees for buying these cars. These cars do way more harm than they can possibly help. It’s strange really, because it is nowhere near a solution to the problem.
Energy is a hard thing to try to balance. We should focus more on trying to break hydrogen bonds, or other chemical means. Perhaps someone could make a system that breaks the bonds between Carbon and Oxygen in CO2. It’d be dangerous if CO was the result, but if carbon was consumed in the engine and oxygen was emitted, then theres the solution to the problem.