A History and Benefits of Electric Cars

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What first comes to mind when you think of the word electric? Do you think of fierce lightning, bright light bulbs, or crazy science experiments? Now, what do you first think of when you hear cars? Do you think of annoying traffic, poorly constructed roads, or filling up with gas? What comes to mind when you think of electric cars? Some people think of an inexpensive way to get around that doesn’t make a terrible impact on the environment. Electric Cars, referred to as EVs, are the cars that will change the future.

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The first EV came around in the 1880’s in Europe. In about 1891, William Morrison built the first American EV which was a six passenger vehicle powered by batteries under the seats. They became popular in America soon after. During the late 1800’s, more EVs were being driven than gas powered cars because they were quiet, easy to operate, and free of smelly fumes. They accounted for 38% of all the U.S. car sales. In the early 1900’s gas-powered cars became more powerful, performed better, needed less refueling and were cheaper to operate than electric cars.

Also, many EVs could not go above 20 mph and needed to be recharged every 50 miles. By 1905 only 7% of the car sales in U.S. were EVs. They had nearly disappeared by the late 1920s. Rising concern about air pollution and a growing shortage of petroleum, that is used to make gasoline, revitalized people’s opinion and interest in EVs in the 60s. The limited production of EVs resumed in 1970; however, sales were still low because of high price, limited travelling range, poor performance and the lack of an inexpensive, powerful, durable and lightweight battery. In the 1980’s, manufactures started coming up with a car that had all of the components of an electric car but with an internal-combustion engine. They are known as Hybrid cars.

Some people feel that all cars are polluting the air, but electric cars do not, because they don’t release harmful emissions, they use a resource that we can create using natural means and they don’t use gasoline which wastes a vital resource in the world today. Many people say that EVs are too weak, small, and not much fun to drive. They say they are not even dealing with the problem of air pollution because of what powers the  battery. One person said, “Batteries don’t power EVs, power plants do. It is better than gasoline cars in one way only, and only if the new energy source really is healthier for us than the one we are using now, which is oil. But is it?”.

EVs in fact do help the environment more than most people think they do. The first thing is that they don’t release harmful emissions. Gasoline cars burn the gasoline and release hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide, and nitrogen oxide into the air which pollutes it, endangers people’s health, and damages crops and livestock. The second thing is they use a resource that you can create using natural means. “With electricity to power our transportation, our world can tap into renewable resources like hydroelectric, solar, wind, or geothermal power; resources that lessen our environmental footprint [impact]”. The last thing is that EVs don’t use gasoline which is a key part in today’s world. “Gasoline is a precious natural resource and vital to the world economy. EVs use no gasoline and require no oil changes. Using less fossil fuel can help relieve our current energy shortages while ensuring that future generations can rely on the same inexpensive, useful, petroleum products that we all take for granted”.

EVs originated in the 1880s but didn’t last long because of their inefficiency. They came back around 1970 with the rising concern about air pollution. Some people still oppose them, because they think they are still inefficient and require high maintenance. EVs are better for the environment because they don’t release harmful emissions, they use a resource that we can create using natural means, and they don’t use gasoline which wastes a vital resource in the world today.

EVs do not release harmful tailpipe emissions into the air that endangers life. Research shows, “pollution endangers people’s health and damages crops and livestock”. They are highly dangerous and hang over our cities all of the time. The more time that cars are driving around the road, the more pollution is being added to the air. EVs do no add to this problem. There are many different chemicals that are released from the tailpipes of cars that EVs don’t have, since there is no need for them.

There are many harmful gases that are created when you burn gasoline. Studies show that burning gas releases hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide, and nitrogen gas. These are harmful gases that can cause serious health risks and other problems. These chemicals hang over heavily populated area. Facts indicate: Ozone forms when hydrocarbons combine with nitrogen oxides and chemically react in sunlight. Hydrocarbons and nitrogen oxides are primarily produced by motor vehicles and various industrial practices. Ozone is a highly reactive oxidizing agent that breaks-down organic materials. Ozone is the primary component of smog, which has plagued Los Angeles for many years.

A natural phenomenon called an “inversion layer” traps these gases and prevents them from dissipating into the atmosphere. Symptoms of ozone exposure are coughing, shortness of breath, wheezing, fatigue, throat dryness, chest pain, headache and nausea. Ozone has been shown to cause inflammation of lung tissue and reduced lung capacity. The development of asthma, increased lung cancer mortality rates, and accelerated lung aging have all been linked to ozone exposure. Lung damage from long-term exposure to ozone can be permanent, while short-term exposure appears to be reversible. Ozone reduces the respiratory system’s ability to fight infection and remove foreign particles such as particulate matter.

EVs don’t have the problem of releasing the previously mentioned harmful chemicals Professionals say that EVs will have a great impact on reducing air pollution and will be the best solution to obtaining clean air[Gri]. EVs will be a smart way to achieving the goal of reducing and getting rid of air pollution.

EVs use a power source that we can create with natural means. There are many ways to create the electricity to power an EV: Hydroelectric, wind power, nuclear power, and hydrogen fuel cells. They all use resources that don’t add any pollution, endanger life, or are harmful in any way. They are very helpful in reducing humanity’s impact on the environment.

Research shows that 90% of the electricity generated is generated by using water. Hydroelectric power is extremely helpful and an easy way to generate power because of the abundance of water on the earth. How water is turned into electric energy involves a dam. Water, that is stored in a lake or a reservoir flows through an opening in the dam which turns a turbine that generates electrical currents that flow through wires powering our world. Hydropower has been around for a longer period of time than other means and, is becoming even more efficient.

Wind power hasn’t been around as long, but is still helping greatly in generating power. Facts indicate “Turning the turbines can be accomplished by using wind power. The energy that turbine generators get from the wind varies when the wind’s energy varies, thus the electricity produced also varies. Wind energy is still far behind hydropower as a source of electricity production. It only accounts for 1% of the world’s electricity production. Like water energy, wind energy is a renewable source”. Wind power is still helpful even if it isn’t all that strong. Experts say “Sometimes high tech can start out low tech”

Electricity can be created by using natural means: Hydroelectric, Wind power, Nuclear power, and Hydrogen Fuel Cells. Almost 90% of our electricity comes from hydroelectric means and only about 1% comes from Wind power. The power created from these means is how EVs obtain their power.

EVs don’t waste gasoline, a vital resource in today’s world. Experts say, “Gasoline is a precious natural resource and vital to the world economy. EVs use no gasoline and require no oil changes. Using less fossil fuel can help relieve our current energy shortages while ensuring that future generations can rely on the same inexpensive, useful, petroleum products that we all take for granted”[Ano08]. They don’t have the transmission and engine of a gas-powered car. Instead, they have a unique and powerful engine.

Facts indicate that electric energy is stored in batteries and is converted into mechanical energy. Research shows, “Electricity goes to an electric motor attached to the drive axle. The motor turns the axle and moves the vehicle”. This makes for an effective car.

There is no need for a transmission from a combustion engine to the wheels. It is just a direct current to the wheels. This make for fast and powerful cars. The book Electric Dreams tells about a group of High School students in North Carolina who build an EV and race it against other schools in the southern US. It proved EVs can match up to any type of car. EVs don’t use gasoline, because there is no need for it in their system. EVs can be incredibly fast and powerful. They convert electric power directly into mechanical energy. EVs are fast and effective cars that only need electricity to run.

What is your favorite movie? There are hundreds, even thousands of choice, but what movie comes to mind when you think of EVs? Who Killed the Electric Car? is a great documentary about EVs. It talks about the main advantages to an EV:

Here, in a nutshell, are a few key benefits of electric cars:

  1. Electricity is cheaper than gas and can come from renewable resources such as solar and wind power.
  2. Electric cars pollute less than gas-powered cars (especially when renewable energy sources are used to generate electricity).
  3. Electric cars are much more reliable and require less maintenance than gas-powered cars. You don’t even need to get your quarterly oil change!
  4. By using domestically-generated electricity rather than relying on foreign oil, we can achieve energy independence and will no longer need to engage in costly wars in the Middle East to secure an energy supply.
  5. Electric cars can utilize the existing electric grid rather than require the development of a new, expensive energy infrastructure (as would be the case with hydrogen).

EVs have been around almost since the first combustion engine. They were created in Europe in the 1980s. In about 1891, William Morrison built the first American EV. They grew popular until the gasoline-powered car surpassed the efficiency and power of the EV. They almost completely disappeared until rising concern about air pollution brought another look into alternative power.

In an interview with Clay Christiansen, an employee at Gene Harvey Chevrolet, he talked about the basics of an EV. He said: EVs can travel on average 40 miles on a full charge. If you use a 120-volt plug it takes about 10 hours to charge. If you use a 240-volt plug it will take nearly 4 hours to fully charge. EVs use a lithium-ion battery which is durable and reliable power source. EVS has a liquid cooling and heating system to keep the battery at a comfortable temperature to maximize the efficiency of the battery.

EVs do not have an engine so they don’t release harmful chemicals such as: hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide, and nitrogen gases. “Hydrocarbons and nitrogen oxides combine creating ozone which hangs over cities creating smog and inversions in turn causing serious health problems. They are extremely dangerous and we should be trying to clean up the air. EVs use electricity as the power source, which can be created using natural renewable resources. Electricity can be created by using natural means: Hydroelectric, Wind power, Nuclear power, and Hydrogen Fuel Cells. Almost 90% of our electricity comes from hydroelectric means and only about 1% comes from Wind power. We can create electricity without damaging the environment also.

 EVs do not waste gasoline which is a vital resource in the present economy. Experts say, “Gasoline is a precious natural resource and vital to the world economy. EVs use no gasoline and require no oil changes. Using less fossil fuel can help relieve our current energy shortages while ensuring that future generations can rely on the same inexpensive, useful, petroleum products that we all take for granted”[Ano08]. We need to conserve the gasoline for other uses than just our cars.

Some people feel that all cars are polluting the air, but electric cars do not, because they don’t release harmful emissions, they use a resource that we can create using natural means and they don’t use gasoline which wastes a vital resource in the world today. Anyone reading this should consider buying an EV. EVs are extremely helpful to the environment. They don’t release harmful chemicals, they use a power source which can be created naturally, and they don’t consume gas. Buy an EV; they are a smart choice for a car.

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A History and Benefits of Electric Cars. (2022, Oct 03). Retrieved February 7, 2023 , from
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