A study claims that the GMC Hummer EV pollutes more than the Chevrolet Malibu

With a 212.7-kWh battery pack that tips the scales at 2,923 pounds (1,325 kilograms) and a curb weight of 9,063 pounds (4,111 kilograms), the GMC Hummer EV is not your average electric vehicle that saves the planet.

We already knew the all-electric truck’s efficiency isn’t something to brag about since learning about its EPA rating of 47 MPGe on the combined cycle. But a new study sheds light on an aspect that is often overlooked: CO2 emissions from electric vehicles stem from the way the electricity that powers them is produced.

While electric vehicles have zero tailpipe emissions, they are still responsible for greenhouse gas emissions, according to a study by the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (ACEE)a nonprofit research organization focused on reducing energy waste and combating climate change.

The organization argues that policymakers and advocates should explore ways to increase the efficiency of electric vehicles and reduce their environmental impact, since about 60 percent of electricity in the United States is generated by burning fossil fuels. ACEE notes that until the grid is completely carbon-free, there will be emissions from generating electricity to run electric vehicles, known as upstream emissions.

The nonprofit uses the Hummer EV as an example in this regard, calculating that the electric pickup emits 341 grams of CO2 per mile when grid emissions are taken into account. That’s significantly higher than the Bolt EV’s 92 grams of CO2 per mile and even beats the gas-powered Chevrolet Malibu’s 320 grams per mile rating.

Still, compared to the original Hummer H1’s 889 grams of CO2 per mile rating and similar gas-powered trucks on sale now, the electric GMC Hummer is much greener.

ACEE points out that the environmental impact of electric vehicles is not just about the electricity generated to power each mile, but that the manufacturing process also causes the release of greenhouse gases at various stages, known as embodied vehicle emissions.

Electric vehicles use minerals that must be mined, processed, and turned into batteries, and as automakers pursue ever-increasing driving ranges, batteries often grow larger, and built-in emissions increase in the process. Of course, the same could be said about efforts to extract and refine oil that add to tailpipe emissions from ICE-powered cars.

The organization argues that policymakers and automakers need to focus more on the efficiency of electric vehicles as they proliferate.

“The Environmental Protection Agency should explore ways to include the efficiency of electric vehicles in fuel efficiency and greenhouse gas standards, starting with accounting for upstream emissions from electric vehicles. Right now, regulators They calculate the emissions of gasoline vehicles and set requirements for car manufacturers, but electric vehicles are considered to have no CO2 emissions.”

ACEE he believes that taking upstream emissions into account would mean “selling a more efficient EV would be more advantageous for automakers to meet their regulatory requirements.” See the link below to view the full study.

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