From the ATR website.
The Marshall Policy Institute has released a new study weighing the costs and benefits of the U.S. government’s subsidization of the electric car. Their damning analysis exposes the initiative as one which harms American producers, consumers, and taxpayers, all the while failing to substantially address the environmental issues at which it is aimed.
In 2010, one fourth of GM and Ford’s hybrids were purchased by the federal government. Nissan got a $1.4 billion loan from the feds to develop their electric car, the Leaf. Several thousands of dollars in tax credits per car have to be shelled out to make these models saleable. These and other measures, the Marshall paper notes, are spurred largely by the altruistic wish to save the environment, regardless of whether the cars have any real effect:
According to the Congressional Research Service (CRS), cars and other light duty vehicles accounted for 17% of U.S. emissions in 2007, which translates into about 4% of global emissions. Since electric vehicles will account for only a small percentage of the U.S. fleet anytime soon, under 5% until after 2020 or beyond, their impact on global emissions will be swamped by developing country emissions.
Proponents of subsidizing electrics and hybrids cite lessening dependence on foreign oil and the creation of “green” jobs to support their position. In reality, the facts are quite different.
The reduction of oil imports from increased usage of the cars is miniscule, especially when compared to a simple increase in domestic oil production and exploration, which the Obama administration has made a point of suppressing.
Additionally, the ill-defined “green” jobs created by production of these cars are far offset by the net waste of investment dollars that could have created far more of them elsewhere in the economy.
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