By Elena Shao, NY Times • Feb 18, 2023
Just How Good for the Planet Is That Big Electric Pickup Truck?
Electric vehicles (EVs) have become increasingly popular in the United States, with a new crop of big models that resemble the gas-powered pickup trucks and sports utility vehicles that have long been the country’s best-selling vehicles. While EVs are seen as a more climate-friendly option than gasoline-powered cars, there are concerns about their emissions and safety impacts.
Experts say that, as EVs get larger and heavier, their climate impact increases due to the size of the batteries and the additional electricity required to charge them. The production of larger batteries of electric vehicles requires more raw materials, like lithium and cobalt, which are extracted from the environment and can harm local communities and wildlife. The same is true of their safety impact, with heavier vehicles posing a greater threat to pedestrians and other road users.
However, advocates argue that larger EVs may be essential for some individuals, and they may encourage a broader range of consumers to switch to electric cars.