A new study by Imperial College London has revealed that electric vehicles (EVs) emit on average as little as one quarter of the CO2 produced by conventional petrol and diesel cars.
If the manufacturing of batteries is taken into account this figure rises to one half. The CO2 emitted in producing batteries for the most efficient EVs would be saved after just two to three years of running.
As Britain’s electricity supply is being progressively decarbonised, the CO2 emitted by EVs could fall to one tenth of that produced by petrol cars in five years’ time. 55% of electricity demand is already being supplied by wind, solar, biomass and hydro.
The number of EVs in Britain is increasing by 30% a year and has now reached well over 200,000. One in 40 cars sold in the UK are electric with a third being pure battery models and two thirds being plug-in hybrids.