Electric Vehicles Pollute More Than Hybrids?

The Union of Concerned Scientists has released a report claiming that hybrid vehicles and other cars with extremely high gas mileage pollute less than plug-in vehicles that are charged in coal-dependant areas.

Though this headline-grabbing factoid is sure to be a surprise to many, the study also pointed out that the bulk of the electric vehicles on the road today pollute less, due to their charging process, than does the average gas-powered vehicle.

Perhaps the main take away from the report titled, “State of Charge,” is that no vehicle with an engine or a motor can honestly be referred to as being a “zero emission” unit, since even the electricity that power plug-ins comes from either natural gas or coal burning power plants, that do indeed produce emissions.

One example of how much emission a zero emission vehicle in fact produces is the Nissan Leaf, which, when charged in a coal-heavy region, creates the same amount of global warming emissions as a gas-driven car getting 31 miles to the gallon.