Many people have climbed aboard the electric-vehicle bandwagon, lured by promises of pristine air and cheap, easy-to-use electricity that make EVs seem inevitable. But now, after years of spending billions on subsidies and shaming people into buying into our inevitable all-electric future, some are slamming on the brakes — surprisingly, including many of the biggest companies in the industry.
The global companies, recipients of massive subsidies to support fossil-fuel abolition, are backing away from their support.
Elon Musk’s Tesla lost an estimated $28 billion in value after reporting what were called “disastrous third-quarter earnings.” Ford, faced with dramatically slowing sales, just announced it will delay $12 billion in EV investments.
With companies providing far more electric vehicles than consumers want, Toyota’s Chairman Akio Toyoda this week claimed “people are finally seeing (the) reality” of EVs.
There are many reasons for this sudden slump. But a few stick out.
For one, even after all the subsidies, EVs are still pricey, especially at current interest rates, which have nearly doubled from an average of 3.9% at the end of 2021 to around 7.4% today.
Meanwhile, anywhere from a quarter to a third of EV charging stations is out or disabled at any given time. There are an estimated 150,000 gas stations in the U.S., but just 10,000 fast-charging outlets. And even if you find a working charger, it’s expensive: Roadside chargers can be five to 10 times more costly than home chargers.
What happens if you’re in the middle of nowhere and you can’t find a working charger? Sorry, your “car” is no longer a car. It’s now dead metal.
A just-released report from the Texas Public Policy Foundation finds that Americans don’t fully understand the real costs of EVs due to the government’s massive involvement in the market. The numbers are shocking: “The average model year 2021 EV would cost $48,698 more to own over a 10-year period without $22 billion in government favors given to EV manufacturers and owners,” the report notes.
Moreover, “adding the costs of the subsidies to the true cost of fueling an EV would equate to an EV owner paying $17.33 per gallon of gasoline.”
Those enormous EV subsidies aren’t going to the poor, or even the middle class. They’re basically welfare for the mostly wealthy. Don’t believe it? The average Tesla owner is an upper-middle-income male with more than $130,00 in income, according to a study by Hedges & Company.
At the same time, even the most coddled participants in the raid on taxpayer dollars that the green Industry represents are having problems, especially those in the alternative energy industry that are expected to supply the juice for the new EV world.
That includes wind-energy giant GE, which this month announced it’ll lose a cool (pun intended) $1 billion this year on its wind operations. The solar energy industry’s troubles have been widely reported.
As the Daily Caller observed, “the (GE) announcement is the latest sign of trouble for the offshore wind industry, which has seen other leading companies take substantial losses as supply chain woes, inflation, logistical problems and higher borrowing costs have eaten into profit margins.”
Will money-losing energy companies still invest enough to satisfy the immense amount of electricity needed to fuel the future demand by EVs? The answer is clearly no, since, “the U.S. would need to produce 20-50% more electricity annually if all cars were electric vehicles.”
With utilities shuttering coal and gas plants, and with few exceptions, not building new, safe nuclear plants, the chances of increasing electricity output by 50% a year in any meaningful timeframe are nil and none.
Yet California, New Jersey, New York, Massachusetts, Maryland have all decreed that no more gasoline-burning cars will be sold within their borders by 2035. Some 60 countries around the world are also trying to regulate cars out of existence.
They’re joined by the Biden administration, which is shooting for 50% of all cars sold being electric by 2030, 100% by 2040, even as it pursues a “net zero” strategy of killing off all conventional energy sources.
“It’s a familiar pattern of selling complicated policies as simple fixes, where the cultural gatekeepers misrepresent EVs as a ‘net zero’ technology, lowball the total land area needed to build out solar and wind farms, and make it difficult if not impossible for critics to question the apocalyptic assumptions and dystopian predictions of climate action advocates,” noted Real Clear Investigations in its report, “Mega-Jolt: The Costs and Logistics of Plugging In EVs Are About to Become Supercharged.”
EVs are nifty, we admit. They’re fast. They’re sleek. They quietly hum. Many like owning them. But they have so many drawbacks — spontaneous fires, lack of charging stations, high insurance and repair costs, not enough electricity capacity — that they’re not ready for prime time. And their lavish government support is grossly unfair to average Americans.
“Electric vehicle owners have been the beneficiaries of regulatory credits, subsidies, and socialized infrastructure costs totaling nearly $50,000 per EV,” Jason Isaac, an author of the Texas study, told Fox Digital. “These costs are borne by gasoline vehicle owners, taxpayers, and utility ratepayers, who are all paying a hefty price for someone else’s EV.”
With the costs and problems with EVs now on the radar, the EV sales boom appears to be skidding to an abrupt stop. Good. Some day, the technology and electricity might be available for a genuine boom in EV auto sales, one driven by market demand, not by government command. As for now, the government’s EV bubble looks like it just popped.
— Written by the I&I Editorial Board