By Steve Austin
Joe Romm is a dedicated climate scientist who runs the blog Climate Progress. Unfortunately, he has a fixation with electric cars as being the savior to the world’s climate peril. Recently, he posted an article entitled Here’s what charging your electric car will look like in 2030. His premise: “The future is electric cars — and cheap charging.”
This seems dead wrong. If carbon pollution risks destroying civilization, then how on earth will electric cars be the “future?” They require massive amounts of CO2 emissions to produce, require massive amounts of CO2 for infrastructure to drive on, and are toxic to the environment. Further, electric cars are, and most likely will be in the future, owned by the wealthy of the first world. In the energy constrained future, electric cars will siphon limited electricity away from communities that will need it the most so that the elite can continue to pretend that life in the time of climate change isn’t too bad.
Icons of social and environmental justice, electric cars aint.
If climate change is indeed the peril that scientists tell us it is, then mitigating it will mean the end of the industrial era. With that will come the end of the suburban life that demands personal vehicles for living. Pretending that electric cars will allow us to drive happily into the future is delusional.
And it hurts the cause: when deniers see commentary like this they can rightfully say, “it can’t be too bad if all it will take is electric cars to solve it.” To them, and to perhaps the majority of Americans, promoting electric cars seems to make dealing with climate change about lifestyle choices, instead of the radical reimagining of our civilizational structure that addressing the climate peril demands.
The promotion of electric cars as the “future” by climate scientists tells the world that if we simply change a little, then we can keep the current system going. We need to hear from scientists: is that true? If it is, then all hope to mitigate climate change is gone as people will simply choose not to play along by driving an electric vehicle. If it is not true, then we need to push back hard against those who should know better.