Infographic: Electric Vehicles Can Half Our Oil Use by 2035

4 years ago by Inside EVs Staff 21

According to the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), there is a way that we can half our oil use by 2035 and electric vehicles are key to achieving this reduction.

The Union of Concern Scientists released this “Infographic: Electric Vehicles – Oil Savings in Action,” which we’ve posted below.

UCS says this:

“Electric vehicles are a key component of a realistic plan to cut projected U.S. oil use in half in 20 years.”

infographic-electric-vehicles-oil-savings-in-action_web-page-widthSource: Union of Concerned Scientists

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21 responses to "Infographic: Electric Vehicles Can Half Our Oil Use by 2035"

  1. TomH says:

    …….and double our use of coal, nuclear, and natural gas. Sweet.

    Let’s continue to pretend that electricity is free and has no negative side effects.

    1. drpawansharma says:

      So Mr Tom H, please tell your solution.

    2. Tom, your argument ignores our ability to generate electricity from carbon zero or carbon neutral sources like hydro, wind, solar (including solar thermal, which can be stored overnight), geothermal, etc.

      These are not free, but they are cheap and getting cheaper, especially when you consider that we do not have to invade other countries to keep our supply lines open.

      What is the cost of a few wars? Do you pay for that at the pump?

      What is the cost of clean air? Do you pay for that at the pump?

      Clean renewables don’t have large externalities like this. Yes, we have to continue the build-out. Just as we do with a cleaner fleet.

    3. Spec9 says:

      TomH, what you post is wrong. I won’t call it a lie because I’ll just assume you are ignorant of the facts of reality.

      First of all, it would NOT double our other energy usage. Electric vehicles are much more efficient than gasoline engines and thus our energy usage would not double.

      Second, I see you neglected to mention hydropower, wind, solar, geothermal, biomass, and other renewable sources of energy. Wind was the #1 newly installed electrical generation system last year. I personally installed a solar system that provides all of the net electrical needs for both my house AND electric car.

      Third . . . so what if our nuclear energy usage increases? Nuclear fuel is cheap. And natural gas is something we have a lot of as well. Coal usage will not likely significantly increase and may even decrease as coal plants continue to be retired and replaced by wind, natural gas, nuclear, solar, geothermal, etc.

      1. scott moore says:

        Can we refrain from calling each other “ignorant” here simply because we disagree?


        1. Koz says:

          “Ignorant of the facts” is different than calling someone ignorant in general. Not sure what the disagreement is. One comment was simply inaccurate and misleading. The initial comment was incendiary and Spec9 was reacting to it.

        2. Rick says:

          Ignorant is not a bad word but is you don’t know a basic fact that Oil is not renewable and we don’t have all we need as a society, plus energy can be produced by several ways you are an ignorant. If you knew and still say it you are a liar so you choose.

    4. GuyMan says:

      If it doubles our use of NG, Nuclear, and Renewables – I’m fine with that – Sure electricity isn’t free – but it’s generally “sticky” to where it’s produced – It’s much less “fungible” than coal or oil – Even NG is harder to liquify and ship. Nuclear, NG, and Renewables are all domestically produced, and remove us from wars and entanglements to protect oil. As long as we’re using less coal, and oil, then the carbon footprint drops as well – Even NG which is a fossil fuel is about the cleanest your going to get – And it’s a great “peaking” fuel for electric demand spikes. Nuclear is great base load, and renewables are good during daytime demand.

      So yea, electricity isn’t free, but NG is cheaper than coal, residential solar is getter cheaper every day, and future nuclear approaches (LIFTer, and Pebble breaders) are looking like cheaper and safer alternatives to PWR – Electricity is also one of those few energy sources you can produce at home (Solar or wind).

      So long term, as long as it’s not coal or oil, I see the electrification of transport as ineveitable and a good thing on multiple fronts (economic, enviromental, nation security) – So while electricity isn’t free and does indeed have a cost and potential negative side effects – It’s a MUCH better choice than coal or oil – I guess I missing the point of your concern – Give the alternatives of trying to access “oil in more extreme locations” (deep water drilling, tar sands) – The growing use of electric cars seems overall like a fairly obvious & positive thing (we just need to reduce their costs, and the costs of batteries) – Higher volume and more competition is sure to help drive down both of those costs.

    5. Mint says:

      You’re a complete ignoramus.

      No, it would not double our use of electricity. 100M EVs would only need 10% of our electricity generation, and we wouldn’t need any more capacity since most of that would be charged at night when plants are idling anyway.

      By 2035, nuclear power will be the cleanest, cheapest form of energy, so I don’t see why that’s a bad thing.

  2. David Murray says:

    I do not believe it will happen that quickly unless we have a massive cost decrease in batteries. The main reason is that once we start adding a significant number of electric vehicles to the roads, gasoline usage will drop. As such, the price of gasoline will drop. That will take one of the big incentives away of moving towards an EV. Sure, by that point most people will recognize some of the other benefits of owning an EV, but cost will always be one of the biggest hurdles for people. So while an EV might be cool, if gasoline is $1.00 per gallon because half of the demand is there that used to be there, then what?

    1. drpawansharma says:

      Oh, Mr David, it will happen…just wait till 2020…..ohh it is going to be so much fun.

      1. krona2k says:

        Agreed, if what’s happening with EVs doesn’t have all the hallmarks of a massive emerging trend that we’ve seen time and time again with technology, I don’t know what does.

    2. If cheap oil was still plentiful, we wouldn’t be drilling in deep waters, or extracting tar sands or even fracking, which is more expensive and complex than conventional drilling. We are doing these things because cheap, easy oil is getting hard to find.

      1. krona2k says:

        You get it. Amazingly few people seem to be able to grasp these simple concepts.

    3. Spec9 says:

      The price of gasoline will NOT drop in any significant amount. It CANNOT drop belong the production costs for any significant length of time. Companies need to make money. Arctic drilling, fracking, ultradeepwater drilling, and other modern techniques are EXPENSIVE.

    4. Mint says:

      Gasoline price won’t drop for at 50 years.

      Oil’s price is controlled by OPEC, because they control ~50% of production and oil has inelastic demand. In any other industry, what OPEC does is illegal collusion, but we have no choice but to accept their actions. If prices get too low from either high production or low demand, OPEC cuts quotas. The member nations have reveled in $100/bbl oil and won’t let it go back down to the ~$30/bbl it’d be at in a competitive market.

  3. drpawansharma says:

    So wonderful and within my lifetime too….so great….you know what this means….by 2020 the oil use will actively start falling. can you imagine what a game changer it will be?

  4. scott moore says:

    Whats the problem with doubling (or tripling, quadrupling…) our use of natural gas? When oil was first discovered, they would burn it off as an unwanted byproduct. It really hasn’t changed much, NG is still a byproduct of oil drilling (fracking), and the need to “do something” with the resulting NG is depressing oil prices.

    Increasing natural gas use in electric utilities has done more to lower the carbon emissions in the USA than increased solar, wind and all of the renewables put together. Using NG to power vehicles is not a bad solution, when intermediated by EV use. The power is generated, stored and used in EVs. The gas is burned centrally in an efficient plant, and advancing technologies can even lower the already low emissions of gas yet further.

    Finally, such a gas to grid to EV infrastructure allows any level of renewables to come online and replace gas generation. In fact, the two complement each other, since gas generation can be:

    1. Generated small scale, city by city or even neighborhood by neighborhood (we have local generation sites here in San Jose close to our industrial zones).

    2. Ramped up or down as the demand requires, and cover the intermittent nature of renewables.

    3. Transported via the grid, so that NG generation capability can be shipped across the country to cover supply gaps.

    If your stance is going to be that NG electrical generation is not “pure” enough and we have to have all renewable generation, right here, right now, well fine. I generally agree with your goals. However, you might find that creating such an artificial chasm to cross might actually prevent that from happening. That is, holding out for the perfect solution will prevent natural gas from being used to cross over to a new basis for energy generation and use.

    The perfect is the enemy of the good.

    1. scott moore says:

      Should read “with the resulting NG (glut) is depressing (NG) prices”

  5. Ocean Railroader says:

    Running out of oil worries me more then burning coal in that rising and shifting gas prices have been more of a danger to our lives then trying to go after something like global warming. Such as when I talk to people about EV’s I don’t mention global warming or saving the polar bears instead I mention how you can save a 10 gallon fish tank of gasloin a week. In that the oil running out can change things a lot faster then global warming and how with oil a lot of things are really made from it and how our food supply and political and governmental systems depend on it.

    If anyone is worried about burning coal and trying to switch over to wind and solar Coal India will make up the difference in that right now for every coal plant we shut down they open up five of them.

  6. JP White says:

    The average cost per 100 Miles for an EV maybe $3.45. For me in Tennessee driving my LEAF I am running at $2.27 per 100 Miles and loving it 🙂 Taking into account the cost of electric consumed, I’ve saved $4,300 compared to the gas car I replaced 2 1/2 years ago. Add to that lower maintenance costs and the savings start to mount rapidly.

    When buying the LEAF, I estimated I would save $10,000 over 100,000 miles. I was wrong, I’m on target to save $14,700. And that doesn’t include maintenance savings.

    Who said EV’s are too expensive?

    As for saving gasoline, over 90% of our household mileage is electric (The Altima is relegated to 4,000 miles/yr), so I am exceeding the 50% reduction in oil by wide margin and it isn’t 2035 yet.