Study Suggests Federal EV Tax Credit Should Favor Greener States

Electric Cars

AUG 11 2018 BY VANJA KLJAIC 68

Maybe its time to revise the federal EV tax credit

According to a research study performed by the Case Western Reserve University, going green could mean totally different things in different areas. The study finds that the “green” value of EVs can vary greatly across the United States.

The researchers used indicators such as climate differences, sources of electricity production used to charge EVs and the distance these vehicles are driven each day. They even go as far as recommending the states scrap the standard $7,500 federal incentive to buy electric vehicles in favor of a sliding scale favoring states where EVs least harm the environment. We’re not convinced this is a wise move though.

Furthermore, according to Chris Yuan, the lead researcher on the study ad and associate professor in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Case Western Reserve, the environmentally friendly EVs are as good as an alternative to fuel-burning vehicles depending on where you live.

“EV batteries degrade so differently in each state that the battery life and the greenhouse-gas emissions should both factor in EV incentives,” Yuan says in a statement. This research provides the facts for our policymakers to think about the strategies to do it better,” he says. “It may not be a good option to offer the same financial incentive to EV drivers in all states.”

The study, published in the journal of Nature Communications, reveals how EVs sometimes can contribute as much in greenhouse-gas emissions (GHG) as their ICE (Internal Combustion Engine) counterparts. Naturally, for EVs, the contribution is done indirectly. For example, if a state provides its citizens with electricity produced mostly from burning fossil fuel, the EVs damage the environment through the electricity it consumes from its batteries. The research finds that not all EVs will have desired results in all U.S. states.

In some states which rely heavily on coal or natural gas to produce electricity, recharging the EV’s batteries produces more GHGs. On the other hand, when you recharge the batteries of EVs in states that rely mostly on electricity produced from a large share of hydropower or renewable energies – such as solar and wind-powered plants – this results in less greenhouse emissions.

The study even calculates how warm weather impacts the EV’s batteries. Warmer climates produce an effect in which the EVs are driven more. This, in turn, necessitates more frequent recharging, which gradually increases the energy each EV consumes, further pushing the emissions of greenhouse gases. Even more, the researchers developed advanced mathematical models that allow them to quantify the battery degradation. In turn, this allows them to uncover additional effects this has on energy consumption and overall greenhouse gas emissions produced by a midsize electric vehicle in an average driving scenario across all 50 states.

Tesla Model 3 Performance

Furthermore, the researchers factored in several additional technical and environmental parameters for the vehicle operations. These range from hourly ambient temperature to average driving distance. In turn, this allows them to better predict the lifespan of a typical battery pack. The findings are quite interesting: the life expectancy of an average EV battery ranges from about five years in Florida to more than 13 years in Alaska.

Finally, the study reveals that greenhouse emissions from EV operation vary substantially from state to state. For example, in Vermont, an average EV emits 18.7 lbs. (8.5 kg) of greenhouse gases per year, while in Indiana, the same EV emits 5,654 lbs. (2,570 kg) – when the battery is brand new and operating at full capacity. Interesting findings, to say the least.

With president Trump backing down from the Paris Agreement and this administration’s general bias view towards ICE vehicles, whether this tax credit overhaul will ever actually happens is still unclear. Several car makers – like Tesla and GM – are also already closing in on the EV tax break, this might not be as important as it once was.

Furthermore, states like California are already eying a move to decouple its regulations from that of the federal government. This would allow them to fine-tune laws and regulation, making for a more future-proof EV tax credit after all. This could also mean that other states could follow California’s lead, making their own local tax incentives and subsidies, better catered to their local needs.

Source: Wards Auto

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68 Comments on "Study Suggests Federal EV Tax Credit Should Favor Greener States"

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philip d

“The findings are quite interesting: the life expectancy of an average EV battery ranges from about five years in Florida to more than 13 years in Alaska.”

I stopped reading at that point. Any study that makes this claim has lost all credibility. 12,000 miles X 5 years = 60,000 miles. So what they are claiming if this is true is that the average Tesla owner or Leaf owner or i3 owner in FL has their entire battery replaced at 5 years since they would all be under warranty at 60,000 miles. You think that would make the news. The automakers making EVs must really be embarrassed that they warrantied the powertrains so generously that they have to honor replacing almost all of them under warranty.

marshall

The life expectancy in years is based on a 30% loss and not a 100% loss. The article is also based on the chemistry of a Leaf battery.

See the actual paper. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-018-04826-0#Fig2

philip d

Based on the worst battery among all mainstream EVs. The one without active battery management. 30% loss at 60,000 miles is abysmal and not representative of EVs on the road today. Maybe representative of some of the first gen Leaf batteries that aren’t being produced anymore.

Average Teslas are showing 90% and above at way over 100,000 miles.

windbourne

no, the un-cooled leaf is STILL being done, except for the top ones. Those now have thermal management.

Nix

They double lost me when they based the entire study on the Leaf battery. That suggests that the Fed incentive should be based upon longevity of the battery of the car, not the state.

Change the credit so that if the car maker can’t meet minimum longevity standards, just like the 16 kWh minimum size standard, that they are no longer eligible.

windbourne

The issue is not the leaf chemisty. It is the fact that the leaf is not properly cooled. Big difference.

windbourne

well, actually the leaf owners have had issues with short lifespan on their batteries due to no cooling.
BUT, Tesla? I3? Bolt/volt? Nope.

Tom

Straight from the bureau of the blindingly obvious.

BoltEV (was SparkEV)

With DUMP in office, this is not likely. If anything, it may be scrapped altogether (aka, tax increase). While fun to think about what-if, I fear DUMP will get re-elected due hateful left wingers driving so many on the fence / moderates away from DUMP alternative.

antrik

Ah, so “hateful left-wingers” are responsible for Trump. Finally, everything makes sense.

Get Real

Faux News regurgitation or perhaps a way of trying to absolve himself of voting for the Trumpster In the first place.

BoltEV (was SparkEV)

I didn’t vote for DUMP, but your accusation may push me over to vote for him next time around. Keep calling people who otherwise wouldn’t have dreamed of voting for that a-hole as having done so, and you will get your wish. Your idiotic accusation is exactly what I’m talking about.

In fact, I suspect you voted for DUMP and want him to get re-elected, hence you’re trying so hard to get people to vote for him by calling everyone to have voted for him.

Dante

So it’s so insulting to infer that you voted for Trump that you’re going to vote for Trump. Also, you’re inferring that someone else for Trump because anyone who infers that someone voted for Trump must have voted for Trump. Also, you didn’t vote for Trump.

Okay, I didn’t vote for Trump and I’m going to accuse you of voting for a Democrat. You see, now your only choice is to vote for one again or it’s a paradox.

BoltEV (was SparkEV)

I don’t go around telling people that they are DUMP voters just because they don’t agree with me. The reason is precisely that: hate filled comment on how I voted for DUMP. getreal doesn’t accuse people of voting for DUMP out of love. Combine this with violent and bullying leftist antics will lead me to vote for that a-hole next time around. I’ll have to drink a lot before voting.

Dante

Can you demonstrate a love-filled way to treat people? I think it’s important to treat others as we wish we were treated, don’t you? This isn’t a game of who is more hateful or violent. Just be good to people and call it a day. And as for whether more Trump will teach people to love, I think that’s clearly not plausible. I can’t think of a single instance wherein a person cited Trump as an inspiration for an act of respect and love for people with a different political opinion.

BoltEV (was SparkEV)

I’ll add that I’ll eat DUMP for 4 more years vs handing over the country to hate filled bullies who throw violence over opinion. There’s still some time, but I highly doubt so much hatred and bigotry of the left will be tamped down so soon. Eating more DUMP might be the medicine this country needs, especially for the left. It’s unfortunate the rest of us has to suffer, too.

Fool Cells

It is sad how people bash Fox News, yet think CNN and MSNBC are not equally biased in the other direction.

Dante

Does anyone think that? I don’t know any such people but then again I’m a millennial and information immediately appears in my phone as it happens. Do people not know about this yet? Why does cable news even exist?

Ziv

Fish don’t realize water is wet. If you live in a liberal cocoon, and it is easy to do so, it is possible for you to not meet all that many conservatives, and almost all the media and social sites are leaning left. So suddenly it is possible for CNN to paint any conservative position as being out of the mainstream, when that position was completely mainstream just 10 or 15 years ago. How many Dems stood for gay marriage, open borders or gender choice by children 15 years ago? You would have been laughed out of the Dem Presidential Convention of 2004 if you had been a Dem and floated those as serious additions to the party platform.

Dante

Hmm, I think what you’re suggesting is that progressives progress the mainstream. That’s true. That’s their entire thing. But even in the 90s or the 2000s or even in the 60s, there were people in favor of gay marriage, open borders, or the recognition of gender identity. It’s kind of a simple train of thought that goes “mind your own business.”

Like with gay marriage. As long as no one tries to stop gay people from living their life, all they do is live their life. Same with [insert whoever]. Just like don’t go out of your way to make life hard for other people and everything is fine. Don’t believe me? Just try it for a while and see what happens to your life.

Ziv

You missed my point. The Democrat party has shifted increasingly to the left, but most don’t realize it because the MSM and Facebook lean left, too.
The fact is that Dems in favor of gay mariage, open borders and children being supported when they opt for identifying as another gender were always there, but they were viewed by normal Dems as being out of the mainstream. And they were, until the dems moved what they considered to be mainstream further to the left and away from what was considered normal. I am all for minding my own business, but society is about culture, and if your new version of what our culture is supposed to be is shooting itself in the foot, it is all of our business.
“We have always been at war with Eastasia!”
No?
Sorry about the 1984 reference, but it seems apropos.

Dante

FYI the adjective is “Democratic” for a party of Democrats.

I think most party politics have shifted considerably historically as attitudes have. I also think you’re misdefining “mainstream” if you feel that issues like gay marriage didn’t have majority support before it officially entered a party platform.

As for “culture” and “shooting foots” I think you’d be surprised how little it hurts to leave people to live their life. Technology is thing that actually involuntarily changes the way people live anyway. Not being able to tell strangers what to do isn’t really all that much of a loss if you mind your own business.

windbourne

sorry, but I am an ex-libertarian that is now GDI. And I can tell you that the GOP has moved much further to the right than what the dems have gone left. At this point, there is very little difference between today’s GOP and 1935 Germany.

Ziv

Look at what Ronald Reagan stood for, and then look at what the modern GOP stands for. Limited government, strong defense, lower taxes and a balanced budget. Admittedly, increased spending on defense and reduced taxes made balanced budget problematic, but in point of fact nearly every time taxes have dropped, total taxes paid to the IRS have gone up due in large part to faster economic growth. Which is what we are seeing this year as the tax cuts last year are starting to take effect.
But the fact is that Reagan would be right at home with todays GOP, whereas JFK would be violently assaulted by Democratic Socialists if he dared to attend a Democrat rally.

windbourne
wow. another neo-con that simply digests the BS that Faux, breitbart, daily stormer, and Trump feed you. 15 years ago, dems STOOD for gay marriage. It was Clinton IN 1994, that pushed Don’t Ask/Don’t tell as a compromise with the GOP. The dems were fine with gays in the dod. They were also fine with gay marriage. It was, and still is, the far right wingers that scream about it. Open borders? Nope. And in General, dems still do not stand for open borders, and CNN does not claim or even imply that dems stand for that. I believe that Dems still want the issue of illegals solved, but survey after survey says that they want the DACA and family to be left here, while blocking the others. Now, because of the far right’s hatred of families other than their own (and even then, I think most do not care about their own), they have broken apart illegal’s family and refuse to do what is court ordered, what they claim to back, and what is MORAL, which is bring the families back together, has pushed SOME dems to hate ICE. If you neo-cons/fascists types would quit pulling apart families and… Read more »
philip d

Oh brother, here we go with the false equivalency again. You’re claiming bias from Fox News has exactly the same level of bias as CNN because they both have some bias.

During WWII the Axis powers killed civilians and the Allied forces killed civilians so they both killed the same number of civilians and were both equally wrong and bad.

Ziv

If you want to go back to WWII, remember that the Brownshirts of the 1930’s were rather similar to today’s Blackshirts of Antifa, and the Democrat Socialiasts seem to be ok with that level of violence, kind of like how the National Socialists used the Brownshirts to intimidate others. The right doesn’t have that level of thuggery, so far. The AltRight claims to be of the right, but is mainly a hate group, not a conservative group. And even those losers tend not to assault their opponents. It looks like Charlottesville is an outlier.

Dante

That s quite a pretzel you have there. Can I have one?

Nix

“even those losers tend not to assault their opponents.”

Wow, what an amazing white-wash of decades of Nazi Skinhead/racist violence!! If you think Charlottesville is the outlier in the history of Nazi Skinhead and racist violence against minorities and gays, you’ve just explained why you keep making the error of false equivalency.

Of course you would see equivalence when you intentionally blind yourself to decades of Nazi Skinhead and racist violence against minorities and gays. If you blind yourself to all that death and violence of course you would think some street punks are exactly identical and equivalent.

BoltEV (was SparkEV)

Substitute “conservative” for “jews” in #walkaway, and Nazi comparison is scary relevant. Sure, not to that degree (and hopefully never), but it is happening in principle.

Ziv

The National Socialists are leftys not of the right. Nazis are closer to the Democratic Socialists than they are to the GOP. Brownshirts then, Blackshirts of Antifa now.

windbourne

Actually, nazis, along with fascism, is historically regarded as a far far right profile. In light of how similar the GOP is today to the NAZIs, it appears that the historians are correct.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nazism
https://www.quora.com/Was-the-Nazi-party-a-conservative-or-liberal-regime
https://www.snopes.com/news/2017/09/05/were-nazis-socialists/

Ziv

That wasn’t how they were viewed at the time and they are viewed as being of the right now only because the left is dead set on covering up their own relationship to the National Socialists. Look at the 25 point plan of the Nazis. It is a lefty document.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Socialist_Program

windbourne

Not even close to the same levels. The real problem is that you think that they are. It means that you are easily manipulated, which explains why you would back idiots like Trump.

Do not get me wrong. I see issues in CNN (I do not watch MSNBC), but I have started reading Faux since the intelligence world came out against Trump/Pence for treason. I wanted to see both sides. BUT, it is obvious that Faux is making up stories in hopes of manipulating things.
Faux has more in common with Breitbart, Daily Stormer, Pravda, and Xinhua, then they do with CNN (and I assume MSNBC).

BoltEV (was SparkEV)

Yes, hate filled left wingers that harass people in restaurants (eg Candice Owens recently and more before) and mob violence (eg Berkeley) are driving otherwise DUMP skeptical toward him.

Imagine if right wingers go around harassing people, mob of violent right wingers prevent left speakers by smashing windows and burning, and right wing politicians scream about harassing left wingers with implied violence. People are going to be further from right. And that’s exactly what’s happening with left. Left has to condemn these acts strongly and publicly. Instead, they are encouraged by crazy left winger like Maxine “looting is ok” Waters and hardly a peep about them from left propaganda outlets like MSNBC and CNN.

Pushmi-Pullyu

It’s just you, dude. I’m not too worried about just one vote.

BoltEV (was SparkEV)

If you never get out of MSNBC echo chamber, you’d never know about conversions. See #walkaway as an example.

Stat wise, black support for DUMP has increased by almost 100%. Granted, they were very small to begin with so increase isn’t much in absolute numbers, but ANY increase for that a-hole is telling how toxic the left has become.

Fool Cells

the hypocrisy is laughable and sad at the same time.

Dante

I condemn all acts of violence strongly. There, all fixed.

Also, I love you.

BoltEV (was SparkEV)

Not all on left are so loving. Checkout #walkaway. Hate filled left is so toxic that they’d throw away decades of friendship for coming out.

Dante

I think I hear you. You need to be accepted and loved for being exactly who you are and you need everyone to do so or you’ll throw a tantrum to teach everyone a lesson.

That wasn’t how I was raised and I’ve never felt entitled to the world’s love and unconditional acceptance, but if you were raised differently, I can see how it can be hard to face even mild, sporadic adversity you never personally experience, but read about online. My advice to you is to toughen up, but while you do that, I can still accept you and not hate you for it even though I think the mindset is unhealthy. I can’t condone your message though. Sorry.

antrik

Considering the completely different behaviours between batteries having active TMS or not, the idea of a “typical” EV battery makes the entire model useless; and the idea to complicate regulations based on that, absurd. (Not to mention that removing local air pollution makes EVs a clear winner in *any* place.)

Nix

So just tie the fed EV tax incentive to also installing solar or joining a solar collective, and screw grid averages.

Robert Quigley

Title is *predictive modeling of… key word predictive. Then *here we show typical 24kwh li battery… not so typical. Goes on to include *while no study has been conducted considering the battery degradation under EV actual driving conditions … no actual driving. Mountain from a mole hill extrapolation throughout. No emission numbers used in calculations to show electricity use in refining [very large], losses at wellhead and pipelines, distribution losses, gas station electricity. Power generation is similarly full of holes. Of course it’s been picked up by ICE rags and sites.

jim stack

A few important points.
The companies not making many electric cars should have the incentive taken away since they aren’t even trying.
Great companies like Tesla that only make electric and lots of them should get all the incentives since they are making a real difference.
Companies that have not made any 100% electrics like Mazda and Subaru to name a few should never get any incentive. They are a company to be ashamed of.
If they vehicle is 100% USA made they should get the biggest incentive (GO TESLA) . partial foreign get partial incentive.

Make these a real incentive by adjusting them like I have suggested.

....

Why reward a company that wants to go private, where it does not have to notify the public of how well it is doing?

Dante

If you want private companies to be illegal, vote for that or something. The credit is about clean air and innovation.

Pushmi-Pullyu

It’s both very sad and rather shocking just how far away some people have wandered away from remembering what the intent of the EV tax credit was. It was an incentive to auto makers to start mass producing low-emission or zero-emission vehicles.

What in the world does that have to do with whether a company is public or private?

And what in the world does it have to do with which State a car buyer lives in? The incentives are supposed to reward auto makers for putting low- or zero-emissions cars into production, not be weighted to reward only States which have already have gotten rid of most of their coal-fired power plants!

BoltEV (was SparkEV)

“If they vehicle is 100% USA made they should get the biggest incentive”

This is actually a brilliant idea. Instead of tariff which is tax increase, this is tax cut as well as helping US companies. The more stuff in US gets more is something even DUMP can agree. It’s too bad this won’t come to pass…

antrik

The incentive is for buyers, not for makers. It doesn’t matter whether the maker is “trying” or not — an EV is an EV, reducing emissions/pollution no matter who built it.

....

This is not gonna happen until 2021, at the earliest.

Ziv

Just a reminder, Trump has allied himself with conservatives so far, but if the GOP lose the house and the Senate is close to even, I would bet money that Trump will make deals with whoever will get it done, be they Republicans or Dems. The left may end up hating Trump less and the conservatives may rue the day they lost the house…

Bob Wilson

States have an independent ability to support or delay efficient cars. A Federal standard should be and remain universal.

Pushmi-Pullyu

“The study… reveals how EVs sometimes can contribute as much in greenhouse-gas emissions (GHG) as their ICE (Internal Combustion Engine) counterparts.”

Any “study” which claims to “reveal” something that’s factually incorrect is at best incompetently done, and at worst just another example of a fake “study” funded by Big Oil.

The Union of Concerned Scientists says that plug-in EVs are less polluting (on a well-to-wheel basis) than comparable gasmobiles, even in States of the USA where most of the electricity comes from coal. That’s good enough for me.

https://www.ucsusa.org/clean-vehicles/electric-vehicles/life-cycle-ev-emissions

The NREL also says that BEVs are significantly less polluting than comparable gasmobiles.

http://c1cleantechnicacom.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/files/2014/06/Fuel_Cell_Whole_Truth1.jpg

Fool Cells

_All_ subsidies should be eliminated.

BoltEV (was SparkEV)

Second part of that should be equivalent tax cuts be made. Just getting rid of subsidies is tax increase.

J j j

What if I live in a “not-so-great” state and I charge my car at home every day off of solar on my roof? Yay policy!

Shane

Nevermind the energy required to refine a gallon of gasoline. The study apparently assumes gasoline and coal to be equivalent. Gasoline refineries often by design incirporate their own electricity generation plants, which usually run on coal or petroleum.

EaglesPDX
“In some states which rely heavily on coal or natural gas to produce electricity, recharging the EV’s batteries produces more GHGs.”. But the comparison is between a full EV, a Nissan Leaf, and a Prius Hybrid and even then they were equal, so going to EV’s would CUT green house gases the same as everyone driving a Prius, 52 mpg, a reduction of emissions by FIFTY PER CENT over a ICE car getting the current 24.7 mpg. Buying an EV even in a coal electricity state would cut one’s emissions by close to 50% vs. the average new ICE car today. Most who are going to buy EV’s do so to cut their emissions so they typically purchase sustainable power purchased by the coal burning utility. OR has an excess of wind generated electricity and much of that is sold via the grid as sustainable, clear electricity. So an EV owner, even in a coal state, will substantially cut his emissions. And the nation needs to promote EV’s to eliminate US oil imports which represent a national security threat to the US as evidenced by $500B a year in weapons purchases (and $20T in debt) from thirty years of Middle… Read more »
sveno

Calm down people – the point of the study was: “that the degradation of EV battery can be mathematically modeled to predict battery life and to study its effects on energy consumption and GHG emissions from EV operations”

They are simply saying that one could use those models to figure out a) if EVs are green and b) how fast the batteries degrade. They don’t try to answer those questions!

antrik

I don’t feel like reading the original study. I’m almost inclined to believe what you say (it wouldn’t be the first article here that retells the original story in a seriously misleading way) — but if that’s the case, where did the suggestion for changing the incentives come from? That surely sounds like an applicable conclusion, not just a theoretical exercise…

Either way, the last study I saw that tried to model battery degradation, was seriously over-simplifying the matter.

EaglesPDX

Tesla Emissions in Montana (highest coal generated elec. state in US) 90 grams a mile.
Toyota Avalon (24 mpg, current new car avg. MPG) 425 grams a mile.

This using https://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/Find.do?action=sbs&id=38294&#tab2 which allows you to plug in a region to see how much pollution your EV would create in different states..

Using US Dept. of Energy figures above, not sure where the study got its numbers.

Ziv

Montana isn’t even in the top 5 states for per capita CO2 emissions! Ok, it is 6th highest… LOL! Wyoming, North Dakota and West Virginia are the top 3. Montana’s per capita emissions are less than a third of Wyoming’s.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_U.S._states_by_carbon_dioxide_emissions

EaglesPDX

But Montana is the top electricity from coal state in the nation, the point of this thread.

Ziv

The article is about rewarding more subsidies to “greener” states. And Montana doesn’t come close to Wyoming in CO2 emissions. I doubt that Montana electrical generation uses as much coal as Wyoming. The numbers indicate Wyoming, North Dakota and West Virginia use a great deal more coal per capita than my home state, Montana. So I have identified my bias. 😉

menorman

So basically, this study contradicts the latest ones from the Union of Concerned Scientists because in their analysis, the worst grid in the nation was in the 38 MPG equivalency range, which is more than 10 MPG above the national fleet average and probably even a bigger delta from the fleet average in those areas.

Cypress

Sound like a very flawed study. And it would be a terrible idea to introduce such a complex incentive system.

Better would be to introduce a system that encourages states to move away from gas and coal energy production. But that ain’t happening under the current US admin.

windbourne

It would be a horrible idea.
Far better would be to STOP all of the federal tax credits, and instead, pass a tax on gas/diesel that increases by .01/gal each month for 100 months. In addition, the gas portion belongs to the state where it was pumped, and the diesel goes to the feds. Finally, require that all of this goes to infrastructure.
Why would this help? Because if new car buyers KNOWS that gas/diesel prices are going up, they can either downsize and buy high mileage vehicles, OR they can simply switch to EVs.
Now, how to get states to clean up? Well, so far, wind/solar has NOT really been replacing coal. Instead, nat gas has been replacing coal. That is not a good thing. What we really need is Nuke SMRs, along with wind/solar, replacing coal. If you check out our coal plants, most of them are less than 3/4 GW, esp those in the cities. That makes them easy to replace with say 10 nuscale reactors, mixed with wind, solar, and storage.