PM10 Emissions From EVs Equal To Those Of Modern ICEVs?

1 year ago by Mark Kane 93

expected total Emissions of PM10 for EVs, gasoline ICEVs and diesel ICEVs (source: Non-exhaust PM emissions from electric vehicles via Green Car Congress)

Expected total Emissions of PM10 for EVs, gasoline ICEVs and diesel ICEVs (source: Non-exhaust PM emissions from electric vehicles via Green Car Congress)

BMW i3 cutaway

BMW i3 without battery is lighter

According to the  University of Edinburgh’s Victor R.J.H. Timmersa and Peter A.J. Achtenb study, PM10 emissions (definition below) of pure electric cars and conventional counterparts is nearly the same.

That’s the result of  a comparison of all the factors (exhaust and non-exhaust emissions) and with the assumption of zero brake wear for EVs due regenerative braking.

The reason why EVs didn’t reduce the PM10 is their higher weight – which is stated at 24% higher than conventional vehicles, which thus increases tire wear, road wear and resuspension.

Obviously, this study only concerns a very small part of the emissions story (ex-actual exhaust, liquid fuel sourcing and burning ramifications, etc), but still is of some interest.

•A positive relationship exists between vehicle weight and non-exhaust emissions.
•Electric vehicles are 24% heavier than their conventional counterparts.
•Electric vehicle PM emissions are comparable to those of conventional vehicles.
•Non-exhaust sources account for 90% of PM10 and 85% of PM2.5 from traffic.
•Future policy should focus on reducing vehicle weight.


Particulate matter (PM) exposure has been linked to adverse health effects by numerous studies. Therefore, governments have been heavily incentivising the market to switch to electric passenger cars in order to reduce air pollution. However, this literature review suggests that electric vehicles may not reduce levels of PM as much as expected, because of their relatively high weight. By analysing the existing literature on non-exhaust emissions of different vehicle categories, this review found that there is a positive relationship between weight and non-exhaust PM emission factors. In addition, electric vehicles (EVs) were found to be 24% heavier than equivalent internal combustion engine vehicles (ICEVs). As a result, total PM10 emissions from EVs were found to be equal to those of modern ICEVs. PM2.5 emissions were only 1–3% lower for EVs compared to modern ICEVs. Therefore, it could be concluded that the increased popularity of electric vehicles will likely not have a great effect on PM levels. Non-exhaust emissions already account for over 90% of PM10 and 85% of PM2.5 emissions from traffic. These proportions will continue to increase as exhaust standards improve and average vehicle weight increases. Future policy should consequently focus on setting standards for non-exhaust emissions and encouraging weight reduction of all vehicles to significantly reduce PM emissions from traffic.

About PM10, according to the EPA:

Nature and Sources of the Pollutant: Particulate matter is the term for solid or liquid particles found in the air. Some particles are large or dark enough to be seen as soot or smoke. Others are so small they can be detected only with an electron microscope.

Because particles originate from a variety of mobile and stationary sources (diesel trucks, woodstoves, power plants, etc.), their chemical and physical compositions vary widely. Particulate matter can be directly emitted or can be formed in the atmosphere when gaseous pollutants such as SO2 and NOx react to form fine particles.

source: Non-exhaust PM emissions from electric vehicles via Green Car Congress


93 responses to "PM10 Emissions From EVs Equal To Those Of Modern ICEVs?"

  1. EV says:

    I am sure the university is sponsored by VW.

    1. FFEINKY says:

      +1 ?

    2. evcarnut says:

      BIG 0IL paid for that “B S” study …., Guaranteed !

      1. Lausbub says:

        And all these paid studies miss their target anyway. The suggestive message is “why limit yourself with an EV (they presume it’s not 100% of a car) if it’s not more environmentally friendly anyway”. But people want EVs, even regardless environmental issues, because they are just better in any perspective.

        1. RexxSee says:

          For what I understand, PM10 are bigger and heavier particles. Maybe their “resuspension” is 4-5 feet for a couple of seconds, and their “refallingdown-sion” is a lot faster than PM2.5 or less, staying airborne nearly forever.
          But in the abstract, they mention Particulate Matter without any distinction, unlike the big colorful graphic.

          Does anyone know the hazards of such bullshit particulates on social health?

          1. Just_Chris says:

            I downloaded the article and had a quick flick through it. It really isn’t about what most of us would call “emissions” and is mainly about brake wear which leads to fine particles of toxic materials (mainly copper). Which, in a fine dust, is a really bad thing, but a totally different bad thing to exhaust emissions. It doesn’t consider how persistent the particles would be in the environment which I think is a bit of an over sight as carbon based materials will hang around far longer than the metal based particles.

            It appears to be more about reducing brake wear and stirring up particles into the atmosphere rather than EV’s vs ICE’s. I think the author is trying to make the point that reducing PM10 and PM2.5’s will take more than just introducing EV’s and that there needs to be more effort put into reducing the overall size and weight of vehicles as the major cause of PM10 and PM2.5 pollution is the brakes not engines. This is kind of true but I think reducing speed of vehicles is probably more effective than weight.

            The article only has one data point for re-suspension of particles from an ev which looks dodgy but at least they factor in the lack of brake dust from the EV due to regenerative braking.

            All in all I think the conclusion is that we should reduce the number of cars in urban areas or at least make the brakes out of something less toxic.

            1. ModernMarvelFan says:

              Good and accurate summary.

              I wish EV supporters would look at criticism with a more balanced views.

              Driving cars alone is pollution.

              Public transportation or bicycling or walking is probably better.

              The shows shows that in the case of driving a mile to work with EVs is still worse than biking or walking that mile…

              1. Terawatt says:

                > [wish criticism would be more appreciated]

                Amen! ???

    3. Ev guy says:

      That is why intellectuals lost public’s trust. They only give answers to one part of a bigger problem and are not willing to look at the big picture

      1. Just_Chris says:

        And this is a great example of why intellectuals are frequently frustrated by the general public and the press who read the abstract (note the abstract is only a summary) of a single article in isolation of the entire research field and then start throwing around wild unsubstantiated claims.

        If you don’t agree with the authors conclusions then you can prepare a well balanced, correctly referenced rebuttal of the article and send it to the editor of the journal. If you make a good case the journal may remove the article or alter it.

    4. jerryd says:

      Sounds cherry picking to me.
      Plus the basic premise EVs are heavier is wrong as it doesn’t bare out in actual produced EVs.
      For instance the i3 is only 2600lbs, light by any standard now.
      Even though if they had actually built it in all composites instead of putting the very heavy alum chassis under it increasing it’s weight, cost by 30%.
      Tesla, Leaf, Other EVs weight the same as similar gas cars.
      Which makes the whole study a lie.

      1. Terawatt says:

        You make me laugh.

        First you accuse them of cherry picking (without substantiation).

        Next, you say EVs aren’t heavier because “for instance” [cherry-picked the ONLY current BEV that isn’t a heavy car for its size, the BMW i3] isn’t really very heavy.

        I consider anyone who fight the good fight – for EVs that is – my ally. But I do think we should be honest and look at EVs as what they are – a much better kind of car. They are not the solution to all problems. They don’t mean public transport isn’t important. It’s still far more healthy to bike to work than sit on our behinds in a less polluting car. And so on! EVs are good enough and important enough without us having to pretend they are more than they really are!

  2. Rob says:

    Once again no mention of refining emissions.

    1. Michael Will says:

      +1 because it was done with the oil industry agenda in mind

      And besides, I added solar to my garage roof and am producing more than I consume for both house and car 🙂

      1. evcarnut says:

        That is beautiful ,Fantastic & I love hearing it! More Power to you! (No pun intended)…l o l …Enjoy it in the Best of good health ! …..

  3. Tapaskoch says:

    tl;dr: How do PM emissions relate to the other emissions from ICE cars (local) and EVs (power station )? I’d gues PM is only a fraction…

    1. TomArt says:

      It is a selective study – it appears to be only looking at local PM emissions, according to the abstract. Sources of PM for power generation and petroleum refinement are not local.

  4. tosho says:

    Yet another oil-money-pseudo-study.
    Why do they count “resuspension” particles as caused by the cars? Aren’t those already existing in the environment and only lifted up by the car? Why don’t they mention factors like car speed and aerodynamics in this case? And are the exhaust numbers for a modern petrol or a VW/5 years old diesel. We already know that petrol engines produce almost no PM.

    1. philip d says:

      Exactly. If all cars were EVs then there would be almost half the particles to resuspend in the first place.

      It’s asking a lot of EVs to expect them to have less emissions AND to not stir up all the particulate crap that ICEs put there in the first place with their exhaust and brakes.

  5. paul wanamaker says:

    These are non exhaust emissions. Of course they are similar. The title should be EV emits the same PM as an IC vehicle (ICE without the “E” for engine)

    1. TomArt says:


    2. Martin Winlow says:

      Indeed… lots of people rushing around screaming and renting their hair when actually, its probably all perfectly accurate… and – compared to the real issue of engine pollution – almost completely irrelevant!

  6. Ambulator says:

    Electric cars are far from the heaviest on the road. If tire and road wear are so dangerous we need to consider how to improve them for all vehicles.

    1. Terawatt says:

      Electric vehicles are generally heavier than the most similar vehicles with fossil drive trains – what I now enjoy calling “exhausted cars” (ain’t I clever?). Isn’t that what is relevant? The fact that EV trucks and lorries aren’t yet on the roads is no argument against the fact that one drawback of EV technology is increased weight. 🙂

      I completely agree we should look into how PM can be reduced. AFAIU it is the biggest problem with local pollution, at least in the west where CO emissions have largely been “eliminated” (well, reduced by 80%) and causing a ton of airway problems for millions of people. Maybe road surfaces and brakes can be made differently so the particulates aren’t so small. Maybe we could then wash the roads! For all cars resuspension is the biggest issue – so if the road was clean and there was nothing to resuspend that would itself be a dramatic improvement.

  7. Jack says:

    Yeah, just look at the bigger PM10 Particles an simply ignore to show on PM2.5 which is much much more dangerous (Particles the size of Bacterias!) and taking “modern” direct injection gasoline as well as those high pressure injection diesels (TDI / CDI etc..) together with using particle filters which as part of their particle burning & “filtering” producing more just smaller particles. Another Study just showcasing a specific favored result…

  8. Peter Thorsen says:

    There would be fewer particles to resuspend if the ICE’s where not there to produce them from their exhaust.

    The numbers for Exhaust look very strange, gasoline and diesel being almost the same, I wonder if the numbers are theoretical (asuming test-conditions) or real (actual real-life Volkswagen TDI measurement)

    1. Fred R says:

      The resuspension story is ridiculous. It’s only a short term effect, what counts in the long run is of course to reduce NEW particle emissions.
      Maybe the oil lobby thinks it finally found something against EVs. But if EVs were to base their advantages on such fallacious concepts, what would we hear from ICE car manufacturers and oil companies!

      1. Terawatt says:

        Both count. Traffic is constant so it doesn’t need to be a long-term effect – it still causes us to breathe the particles.

        I agree that looking at where the particles originate with a look to either make it not happen or make bigger particles that can be removed (washing the road!) must be the obvious attack vector here. Note that exhaust is small even as a source, with road and brake pad wear far more significant.

  9. Speculawyer says:

    What the heck is “Resuspension”?

    1. Terawatt says:

      Fine particulate matter is found in much higher concentrations on roads and near them than farther away. When we drive on the road we whirl them up into the air, causing them to again become suspended, hence “resuspending” them.

      IDK how to evaluate a particular study, but it seems totally reasonable to my mind that BEVs would cause similar PM problems as gasoline (or, god forbid, FCEV) cars. Diesels are presumably worse.

      Resuspension is a big factor and the weight of the car does matter.

      A breakthrough in battery tech yielding 10x energy density improvement (with respect to weight) would make BEVs better than the rest even in this regard. But most likely other solutions will be required, as PM is a huge factor in local pollution and causes all sorts of airways problems and premature death all over in big cities, in which more and more people are living.

      However, it’s important not to overstate the significance of this issue. BEVs do not solve all problems in the world. But being as bad as the alternatives in one important respect and way, way better than the alternatives in several other respects (GHG, energy efficiency) still puts BEVs very clearly ahead of the rest as the better option.

      Cleaning the roads might help; no idea how feasible that is. Public transport obviously would help a *great deal*, can be combined with BEV as a propulsion technology, and is going to be a part of ANY solution invented for big cities.

      1. TomArt says:

        But there are no EV counterparts to the big SUVs and pickup trucks…this study is strangely selective.

      2. super390 says:

        So wouldn’t a more aerodynamic car “whip” less stuff off the road?

        1. arne-nl says:

          I’m not an aerodynamicist, but I’m pretty sure the resuspension is mostly done by the wheels, the part of the car that is closest to the road surface and where local turbulence is higher.

          Having said that, the conclusion would be that resuspension is not influenced by weight, but more by wheel size. As bigger and heavier cars tend to have bigger tires, there seems to be a relation between weight and resuspension. but actually it might be tire size.

          But then again, I am not an expert and other scientists will take up the challenge to try and reproduce the results or falsify them.

      3. TomArt says:

        Thanks for the explanation. I think I’ll opt for the HEPA package…

  10. Mad says:

    There are a few things that this study completely forgets.

    1. Particle emissions is one type of dangerous emission. You also have carbon monoxide, NOx, ozone, Volatile organic compounds, and of course carbon monoxide. Cars have come a long way with their emissions, but particulates are not everything and are not even the biggest concern.
    2. ICEs still emit carbon dioxide… oops forgot the most important one.
    3. Cars emission tests are always run when the car has heated up. Yet, every car warms up multiple times per day and runs rich while warming up. The emissions of ICE cars warming up is much much higher than when it is warm.
    4. Diesel cars and trucks. Nuff said.
    5. There are many filters that remove PM10 particles. The bigger concern are particles smaller than 1 micron. They aren’t even looking at the most important particles.

    Stupid cherry picked article to make EVs look bad.

    1. Terawatt says:

      I don’t know who financed this study or whether there are any quality problems with it. But I suspect nor do you.

      It is disingenious to react to any piece of information or any factual claim relating to BEVs based solely on whether or not the information or claim appears to favor BEVs or not. And it makes perfect sense for any study to delimit its own scope and look at some particular subset of a problem. That makes it possible to reach reliable conclusions and get the facts straight.

      I see no reason immediately to think this study does anything but confirm what we already thought. It has been very well known that resuspension (whirling particulate matter (PM) up into the air, so we can breathe it, when we drive on “dusty” roads) is the biggest component, and that heavier vehicles whirl up more of it than lighter ones. Since there’s no uncertainty about whether BEVs are heavier, we knew this component was going to be bigger.

      If anything, I am relieved to see that BEVs are no worse than other cars in this respect. That means this study cannot be used as an argument against them. There’s no reason to prefer other cars over BEVs even if we are ONLY concerned with PM, because they are merely as bad. It is, however, an argument in favor of public transport in favor of personal transportation, but there is no shortage of other excellent reasons to favor public transit in big cities!

      So please, accept that BEVs aren’t a solution to every problem. They are “just” a much, much better technology than any other for personal cars. And that is enough to pursue them.

      1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

        Terawatt said:

        “I don’t know who financed this study or whether there are any quality problems with it. But I suspect nor do you.

        “It is disingenious to react to any piece of information or any factual claim relating to BEVs based solely on whether or not the information or claim appears to favor BEVs or not.”

        You shouldn’t conclude that everyone commenting on this article knows very little about the subject just because you don’t, Terawatt. I’m no expert on the subject, but I’ve certainly read enough to know that it’s the smaller particles which constitute a much greater health hazard, because they are more likely to get down into the actual tissues of your lungs. The larger particles tend to be caught in the cilia or mucus of the lining of your throat or bronchial tubes, and so carried out of the body without contamination of body tissues.

        I don’t know if this study was financed by Big Oil or one of the “think tanks” which are shills for Big Oil. Nor do I especially care. The point is that the study focuses very narrowly on only one tiny set of particle emissions which just happen to be about the same for both EVs and ICEVs.

        In other words: The data has been cherry-picked in a manner which leads to a conclusion that “EVs are no better than gas-powered and diesel-powered cars.”

        Bottom line: This is a highly biased study. Whether or not bias was in the intent is rather irrelevant. Intentional or not, the study is too biased to have any objective value.

        1. Terawatt says:

          I didn’t consider the possibility that the particles in question are not the most important ones. It seems a little odd to my mind that weight should matter only for the (relatively) larger particles, but not for the smaller ones.

          If that is really the case then that’s certainly a valid and important criticism. I reacted to what seemed to me to be very much knee-jerk reactions from many readers, immediately saying a study must be bad simply because it said something that can be construed as negative (not sure why saying EVs are not better than isn’t simply “neutral”, but it sure seems it really is an “attack”). I certainly don’t claim to be knowledgable about local air quality. To me it does however seem entirely plausible that the PM problem is much more than exhaust and therefore EVs may not solve the problem that living in a big city kills you and ruins your airways. I think that matters and we should at least consider the claims.

          In other words, criticism like yours that actually points out potential issues so they come to attention is superb. But those who immediately posted “I bet it’s sponsored by big oil” ought to work on their attitude.

    2. TomArt says:

      They did not ignore all those things for arbitrary reasons – if you read the abstract, it appears that the study was focused on local sources of airborne PM. Power generation and petroleum refinement are not local to the vehicle during use.

      1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

        Choosing to concentrate on only the larger particles, ignoring the more dangerous (to health) smaller ones, certainly is arbitrary. There’s no good reason for it, and that makes the study pretty useless for anything except its anti-EV propaganda value.

  11. Djoni says:

    This is a good study to stop making SUV and light truck more than anything else.
    How dare they don’t say a thing about it and focused on EV weight instead is your guess.

    Incredible narrow sight there!

    1. Terawatt says:

      Well, I haven’t read the study, so I am not as sure as you are they do not say anything about favoring lighter cars in general. If they don’t, I agree it is a bit odd. But it isn’t meaningless.

      Regardless of whether or not you favor smaller and lighter cars, it is of interest how the choice of propulsion technology affects PM “emissions”. (Of course “emissions” is a misnomer when the MAIN component is resuspension – i.e. whirling PM on the ground up in the air so it is “again suspended”.) It is interesting to know whether we’ll breathe more or less of the “dust” if we choose BEV or something else.

      Since the study really just concluded BEVs are as bad as the others, but no worse, it cannot be used as an argument against them. It is instead an argument for public transit over personal cars in big cities, and that is a cause that is rather well-founded already – in economics, in energy terms, in GHG terms, and in PM terms. And that public transit could and should be electric!

      1. TomArt says:

        Here in the US, the level of sophistication in the public discourse is so low that placing EVs on par with any other drivetrain, even in only one category, is enough to crow triumph and gloat over maintaining the status quo.

        For those of us who do think, we try to be more careful about how things are phrased in order to minimize the odds of such reactions.

      2. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

        Terawatt said:

        “Since the study really just concluded BEVs are as bad as the others, but no worse, it cannot be used as an argument against them.”

        Also incorrect. The argument that “electric cars are no better than gas-powered cars” is used by EV haters all the time. In fact, it’s probably the most frequently seen article from those fighting against the EV revolution.

        For example:

        “New study: Electric cars may be worse for the environment than gas-powered”

        1. Terawatt says:

          Ok, I should have said is no *valid* argument. The fact (if it is a fact – I neither know nor care in this case!) that it is often mentioned obviously has no bearing on its validity.

          How come you chose an example that claims the opposite – namely that EVs are *worse*?? My point was that “X is as bad as Y in one respect” does not constitute an argument in favor of Y over X, and especially not if X is superior to Y in multiple other important respects.

          My point was about arguments, not factual claims. Your example is not an argument, but a factual claim (that we both agree is false).

          I’m not the enemy 🙂

    2. andre says:


    3. Texas FFE says:

      There is a legitimate need for SUVs and light trucks. However, too often these vehicles are used for daily commuting which is not their intend purpose. Responsible people that have the resources will purchase an alternative vehicle for commuting.

      It’s not realistic to expect the elimination of SUVs and light trucks. We need to push harder for zero emission SUVs and light trucks. GM had the right approach a few years ago focusing on hybrid light trucks but has pretty much abandoned that approach.

      The auto manufacturers are going to be lobbying congress to lower CAFE standards because lower gas prices have spurred sales SUVs and light trucks. If anything I congress needs to strengthen the CAFE standards so we get more progress on reducing emissions SUVs and light trucks. We need to tell congress not to give in on CAFE requirements just because gas prices are low and SUV and light truck sales are strong.

  12. Terawatt says:

    Very interesting study! Given that resuspension is such a big component, I am left wondering whether there may be some way of removing the particulates from the ground, so that there wouldn’t be much to resuspend (i.e. to whirl up in the air, where we can breathe it). Maybe we should be washing our most-trafficed roads?

    Having lived in Paris, where the roads wash themselves on a daily basis (I swear!), this strikes me as potentially feasible.

    It may also be possible to filter the air to clean that directly, although probably very challenging technically/economically.

    Given all the other reasons to favor public transit in big cities I am however pretty sure that the main attack vector to battle this problem will be to increase the number of passengers per vehicle. I believe the issue is virtually nonexistent for trains, and it is obviously much smaller for buses. If and when cars can drive themselves, combined with software that can know where people are and where they want to go, it should be possible to increase the average passenger count quite a bit from the just-above-one that is the status quo!

    Addressing the sources of particulate matter is another area that AFAIK hasn’t been much explored (beyond the actually rather small exhaust component) and might deliver big improvements. Maybe roads and tires can be made that don’t wear as much, or that generates larger particles (that don’t remain suspended in air for ages and cause us to breathe them).

    In any case, there is no need to react negatively to this study. It merely shows that BEVs don’t solve all problems, not that BEVs aren’t preferable to other types of cars. We should want to know what problems remain to be solved even if we switch to BEVs, and not react by shooting the messenger.

    1. Mxs says:

      Paris roads wash themselves?????

      I mean, I have been into one bottle only so far, so I am pretty sure it’s not me …. I am not even sure I realy am asking this, but what the hell …. Can you pls elaborate what exactly you had in mind when you wrote it?

      1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

        I think he’s suggesting that it rains every day in Paris.

        That may not be as much of an exaggeration as you think. It does look like it rains, on average, nearly every other day in Paris:,Paris,France

          1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:


            Thank you sbj, I learned something today! 🙂

      2. Terawatt says:

        Lol! But they do!

        Paris is a fascinating place not only because of the *real* underground cinema,

        but also because of its rather amazing sewage systems. Back in the days of Napoleon Bonaparte – admittedly a while before my stint in the place – the great architect and city planner Baron Von Haussmann knocked down about 40% of the building mass in the entire city and designed a brand new lay layout with huge Boulevards (that enabled the army to move around quickly, in case the people got any ideas about not wanting to be suppressed by aristocrats anymore!) and under these an amazing network of sewage channels exists today. Until quite recently they even offered guided tours in there – by boat! – for tourists.

        Anyway. Where in my country we clumsily dig cables and pipes into the ground and have to rip open the streets every time something goes wrong or is to be upgraded or changed, the Parisians benefit from these huge underground systems and just climb down a manhole to install new phone cables or fiber optics or what have you. And one of the features they’ve installed is the ability for roads to wash, or more accurately, rinse themselves. Clean water is pumped from underground into the street, which is designed with a slight tilt. The water runs and picks up sand and leaves and so on, and then goes back into the sewer where it’s cleaned.

        The process isn’t quite automatic – a guy is opening and closing a valve for each street, but the rest of the work takes care of itself.

        Bonus: the expression “it’s raining cats and dogs” also comes from Paris and it’s sewer. In old days, when it rained a lot the sewer would overflow. Dead cars and dogs floated into the streets, and when the rain stopped, the water drained away, but the cats and dogs remained. Hence, it actually looked as if it had been raining cats and dogs, and it did so after torrential rains – and hence the expression.

    2. TomArt says:

      Trains do not have much in the way of tire wear, but they do have a lot of brake wear. When a train goes by, it whips up a lot of dust (which would include brake dust) along the rails.

      One question would be whether there is more or less on a per passenger basis (compared to vehicles and the typical number of occupants in a given country or locale).

  13. Jeff says:

    Wouldn’t the rough underside of ICE vehicles have a tenancy to kick up more dust as compared to EV’s, because the air beneath is more turbulent at speed? It would be interesting to know if they considered this.

    1. TomArt says:

      If the study is empirical, then would be an interesting consideration for their models. If it is experimental, then all factors that exist will naturally contribute to the measured data.

  14. KM says:

    There is another, greener vehicle – electric bike. Just improve the infrastructure and 30% – 50% of trips taken by cars will make no sense. You could improve your fitness too. And they are more affordable than either ice cars or evs. Take the car only for longer journeys and emission problem sorted.

    1. Texas FFE says:

      I had two electric bikes before I bought my FFE. I love my electric bikes but using them is problematic. I don’t think I’ve ridden my electric bikes since I bought my FFE.

      The biggest problem with electric bikes is having to compete with vehicle traffic on the roads. Most of the roads in my city were not designed with bicycles in mind and progress to make streets safer for bicycles is very slow. I have stood if front of my city council many times pleading with them to make our streets safer for bicycles.

      I use to be a very active bicyclists but I have been hit twice on a bicycle by an automobile. Luckily I was not hurt either time. I don’t think l’ll be doing much more street bicycling until the streets get safer for bicycles.

  15. andre says:

    a huge ,idiotic petrol financed study,from a beautiful country,and one of the nicest people on earth!

  16. andre says:

    come to Budapest downtown and smell,and breath all the TD,and not Turbo Diesel sky high emissions,dust,and all cancerogens!!!!

    1. Terawatt says:

      Buda or Pest side?

  17. R3D says:

    Sadly even the CO2 emission is almost same in many countries!

    E.g. the average CO2 emission from electricity in the US is 522 g/kWh. (2011 data. If somebody has newer, share with me!) The rated consumption of Model S is ~300 Wh/mi (~188 Wh/km), which means 98g/km emission. For comparison: the smallest ICE cars start from 80-90 g/km, and the big 4 liters turbocharged engines has ~200 g/km rated consumption.

    This is the US average. So in some states it’s much better (almost clean), but in some other states it’s even worse. In China (623 g/kWh, also 2011 data) we get 117 g/km. The Model X has bigger consumption, specially in winter. So pay attention to where you charge and install some solar panels if you haven’t done yet!

    1. Djoni says:

      At least in Norway, the leading EV adoption percentage, I think electricity is mostly hydro.
      So can be said of Québec and other province of Canada.
      Although not a big number of EV up north.

      As you said, just clean the grid or go solar.

      1. Terawatt says:

        98% hydro.

        But the point is an important one: EVs only make a BIG difference if we also clean up electricity. They will play an important role in doing so, because storage is required to use intermittent sources like sun and wind for most of our energy.

    2. arne-nl says:

      That is not *the* final answer. The grid changes rapidly and clean energy is increasing everywhere. Don’t forget to repeat your study on a regular basis.

      By the time the penetration of EV’s reaches significant numbers (say, 10 years from now), the balance will have definitely shifted towards EV’s.

      We are now still in a sort of start-up phase where only early adopters are interested. They will mature the technology and get it ready for the broader public.

    3. hsparra says:

      R3D, the Union of Concerned Scientists have updated their EV emissions data for the US based on 2015 data. If you live the in US they also have a page where you can enter your zip along with he make, model, and year of various non-pure gas vehicles in their EV Emissions Tool to see its estimated emissions for you zip code. For example, where I live in Texas a Model S P85D emits 216 g CO2/mile. The average plug-in hybrid in the same zip code emits 234 g CO2/mi and the average gas vehicle emits 381 g CO2/mi, and the average BEV emits 201 g CO2/mi.

  18. KM says:

    Yes but renewables are growing almost everywhere so electricity will keep getting greener. Oil in the other hand …

  19. Ed says:

    I wonder if the varying materials that some manufacturers use for the tires was reviewed. Low rolling resistance is big for EVs and I suspect creates a lot less pollutants.
    But it is surprising that all of the tire rubber, which doesn’t stay on the road is even on the radar screen when compared to the particulate from exist.

  20. JimGord says:

    How much of the Koch brother’s $10 million to trash EVs did these folks get?
    Total FUD and obfuscation.

  21. Iletric says:

    Yet again … ICE garnered a respectable 2nd place, while EV ended up 2nd to last.

  22. Locky says:

    For those of you who have access to the paper, Table 5 and 6 basically sum it all.

    It just goes to show that EV and ICEV are more or less the same when it comes to PM10 and PM2.5 emission. Which means, EV is a car, ICEV is a car. The end.

    To improve on the situation, countries need to improve the ‘road mix’ for road constructions.

  23. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

    This study concerns only non-exhaust emissions which are emitted directly from the vehicles. It does not take into consideration the particle missions from the exhaust of gasmobiles, nor the emissions from refineries used to produce gasoline and diesel. Nor does it account for the emissions from power plants used to provide electricity for EVs.

    In short, this study seems to be too narrowly focused to serve any useful purpose.

    It might be of some interest if they attempted to analyze the effect of different kinds of particles on human health. Just a bunch of inert particles floating in the air probably isn’t much of a health hazard, unless you have asthma. Much more hazardous to human health is the toxic and carcinogenic particles coating, for example, diesel soot particles, from all the partially burnt hydrocarbons in diesel exhaust.

    Concerns have been raised about tire particles, but so far as I know, there have been no studies actually showing a correlation between exposure to tire particles and any health problems. So any health risks there, if they even exist, are unknown.

    The other major source of non-exhaust particle emissions from EVs is brake dust. And I seriously question the methodology of this study, if it concludes that EVs don’t emit less brake dust than standard gasmobiles. Surely regenerative braking, which doesn’t use brake pads at all, would significantly cut into particle emissions from brake pads, even on heavier vehicles.

    1. Ambulator says:

      From the summary in the article: “That’s the result of a comparison of all the factors (exhaust and non-exhaust emissions) and with the assumption of ZERO BRAKE WEAR for EVs due regenerative braking.”

      1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

        Yes, but if you read the fine print, the data sources are all for non-exhaust emission.

        So either we’re seeing only selected parts of the original article, or the study wasn’t done in a consistent manner.

        The article also does not define “PM10” or “PM2.5”. My guess is that this refers to particle size; In any case, it seems clear that they’re focusing on only certain groups of particles, not all of them.

        Furthermore, there’s a basic fallacy in including dust (or particles) already present in the environment stirred up in a vehicle’s wake. If the gasmobiles and diesel-mobiles weren’t around to emit all that soot and carcinogenic particles, then they wouldn’t be there for the EVs to stir up!

        Including those is absolutely idiotic, and certainly does suggest deliberate bias to me.

  24. arne-nl says:

    I am shocked by the level of shouting foul and denial. Let’s face it, reality is what it is. If you can’t accept that, go live under a rock.

    People complaining that this study didn’t take other factors into account forget that each and every scientific study has to set some boundaries. They would have to include emissions from producing the battery too, and the ICE, and the construction of refineries, and so on and so forth. Done right, it would end up researching the ‘whole world’.

    Having said that, it is obvious that this study will be used in certain circles to discredit EV’s. But I can handle that. EV’s will succeed on their own merits.

    1. Scientific Method says:

      This “scientific study” took the arbitrary 40 PM10 rating of ICE vehicles and multiplied it by 1.24 (24% heavier) to get his 49.6.

      Sounds very well-researched to me, at least for 6th graders. Taking only weight into account is not a full, nor even nearly-representative, picture of real-world physics and aerodynamics. If a “scientist” is trying to prove something, perhaps their hypotheses should be more rounded and substantiated by a more complete set of factors effecting resuspended PM10 particles (aerodynamics, ground clearance, weight, and even tire width, to name a few).

      1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

        Bravo, sir!

        Glad to see that at least one person is able do discern the abysmal methodology in this bodus science “study”.

        1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

          Typos ‘R Us! Let’s try that again…

          Glad to see that at least one person is able to discern the abysmal methodology in this bogus science “study”.

  25. arne-nl says:

    About this resuspension thing. My best guess is that resuspension is caused by the turbulent air around the wheels and thus not related to weight, but the size and geometry of the wheels and body parts surrounding them.

    Since heavier cars tend to be larger and have larger tires, the authors may have wrongly correlated resuspension and weight. EV’s are heavier, but not bigger than normal cars. And thus EV’s would not cause more resuspension. But that is just an armchair scientist speaking.

    I hope other scientists pick up on this study to refine it and try and reproduce the results. That’s the way science works. It’s a pity the general public doesn’t understand this and runs off with each study to cherry-pick the results, warp the conclusions and ignore the big picture.

    1. Djoni says:

      As far as I can tell, it is the study itself that cherry-pick weigh as the reason why EV do rise resuspension particulate matters more or equal than other.
      And they don’t explain here why tire width, aerodynamic, clearance height, or other air turbulent subsystem like fan cooling or dumping compress air in ICE or truck don’t elevate resuspended particulate more.
      Is there any explanation provide for that in this scientific paper?
      Not in the abstract for sure.

    2. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

      “But that is just an armchair scientist speaking.”

      That makes your premises and conclusions just as valid as the one in this study. Very clearly they didn’t actually go out on a public road and actually measure particles in the air that were whipped up as different cars and trucks passed. Note they cite “Non-exhaust PM emissions from electric vehicles via Green Car Congress)” as a data source.

      This is just an armchair study using data gather by others, and put together using arbitrary and highly questionable assumptions to filter the data in a biased manner.

      This study is about as “scientific” as you reading some posts on Reddit about an auto maker’s cars, and using that to determine the reliability and quality of those cars.

  26. krona2k says:

    So EVs whip up more dirt off the road? Yeah that sounds relevant.

    1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

      Yes, that’s one of the “tells” that this study is at least biased, and perhaps even just wrong-headed. The amount of dust a vehicle whips up as it passes has little or nothing to do with the weight of the vehicle. It is affected by the vehicle’s size, speed, and degree of streamlining… none of which, apparently, were taken into consideration in this biased and very non-scientific so-called “study”.

  27. Stephen Noctor says:

    Particulate matter is often studied in two fractions. PM2.5 and PM10. PM10 is considered ‘course’, PM2.5 is considered ‘fine’. To give some perspective, many brain cells have a diameter of 10 microns. Definition: The PM10 fraction includes particles 2.5 micron and 10 microns. The PM2.5 includes particles below 2.5 microns. Course particulate matter comes from many sources including tires and breaks. PM2.5 mostly from combustion: ICE, powerplants etc. To quote the EPA: “Particles less than 2.5 micrometers in diameter (PM2.5) are referred to as “fine” particles and are believed to pose the greatest health risks.” And as we noticed PM2.5 is not a part of this study.

    1. Kakkerlak says:

      The majority of particulates from combustion engine exhaust are volatile compounds like hydrocarbons and sulfuric acid and are under 1 micron, so they aren’t even considered by this study.

      The major element of this study that bothers me is their assumption about vehicle wakes and resuspension.

      They’re basically saying “EVs are heavier, and heavier vehicles are larger, and larger vehicles have larger wakes.”

      But in the very first part they compare only EVs with nearly identical aerodynamics to their lighter ICE siblings; Soul, Fit, and Focus.

      When my EV lease is up, I’m considering not getting another car at all. Anyone who commutes should remind themselves every day that “you are not in traffic. You are traffic.”

  28. Warren says:

    I find it fascinating that people have such an emotional investment in cars, that they can’t admit that they are one of the most destructive inventions we have ever devised.

    1. Djoni says:

      I’m not sure they don’t admit it as much as they can’t conceive a world without it.
      Factually, I think car have many drawback but a lot of advantage.
      Some say the same for wars, AMD, dictatorship, sugar and TV but nobody can do much about it except for themselves.
      Car on the other end can be made less destructive in many ways.
      Ride sharing amongst other.

      1. Warren says:

        Yes. We could make them smaller, slower, more aerodynamic. Unfortunately, people’s desires are going in exactly the opposite direction.

  29. Fran says:

    So, unless I’m totally not getting this…If they were to test these same vehicles after a torrential downpour had washed the road surface wouldn’t they test out as equal regardless of weight? And if they started from a cold start wouldn’t the BEV test out better in most other pollutant metrics as the ICE would have the warm up period now included? I know there are many studies of well to wheels for both types of behicles but if this study is solely focused on the immediate area then I’d think the BEV wins hands down, especially somewhere where it rains frequently.

  30. Bill Howland says:

    The article is nonsense. Central stations do not produce particulate pollution at these rates (at least not in the very strict USA), and many EV owners charge with prolific solar power that hopefully will last 20 years prior to any more solar power manufacturing is required for that home.

    WHAT IS true is children have gotten sick from all the “Clean Diesels” the enviro-freaks have forced on Paris and London.

    Fortunately they are starting to de-emphasize the Clean Diesel mantra – in view of the scandals, it was a LIE from the get-go.

  31. Surya says:

    How is thins garbage published as science? Oh yes, because supposedly bad science is also science I guess.

  32. Misha says:

    A French company is developing a device that sits on top of the brake rotor and captures 90% of brake-related emissions. It should be pretty cheap, about 23$ per wheel: