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How green is the energy grid? An expert breaks it down

Electric vehicles are known to reduce exhaust emissions. However, these cars still use electricity to charge their batteries.

Electric vehicles can be as green as their power grid. KPRC 2 asked expert Dr. Harish Krishnamoorthy of the University of Houston’s School of Engineering how green Texas’ grid is.

Dr. Krishnamoorthy says Texas’ power grid is very green.

Krishnamoorthy told KRPC 2 that as of February 7, solar and wind combined to meet 70% of energy needs, while coal only accounts for 10-15% of energy produced.

The remaining 20-30% is powered by natural gases. Krishnamoorthy says these numbers change daily, but the biggest changes come from extreme weather events.

When extreme cold or extreme heat hits Texas, it puts greater demands on the power grid. Therefore, renewable energy sources alone will not be enough to meet demand.

Q: So, considering that the grid is not 100% ecological, are electric vehicles still a good solution to reduce greenhouse gas emissions?

AND: Yes, electric vehicles still provide significant benefits over other types of vehicles, such as gas-powered vehicles.

Krishnamoorthy says that an average-sized family car will emit around 25 tonnes of CO2 from production to end of life. For comparison, an electric vehicle will emit 18 tonnes from production to end of life. While the difference may seem small now, CO2 emissions could be further reduced by 2030 by continually improving the production of electric vehicle batteries.

Emerging technologies, such as renewable energy sources on the power grid and the production of environmentally friendly batteries, will determine in the future the extent to which electric vehicles can reduce a driver’s carbon footprint.

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