Sust-it, which researches energy usage data published by manufacturers and government agencies, has used the National Energy Foundation’s formula to calculate that the CO2 emissions produced to generate the 173 Watts of electricity required for an electric Nissan Leaf to travel one kilometre equates to 94 grams. By way of comparison, the latest Renault Clio emits 83 grams of CO2 per kilometre.
That makes the diesel Clio more CO2 efficient by 206 kilograms a year, based on an annual mileage of 12,000 miles, says Sust-it. The electric Leaf costs £483 a year to run and the Clio £895 although Sust-it points out that the savings are mainly driven by tax differentials between the energy sources, rather than CO2 efficiencies in use.
However, in financial terms, the electric car has lower running costs and has the environmental benefit of zero tail pipe emissions, reducing city pollution.
Sust-it founder Ross Lammas says he was “completely surprised” by the findings and says: “The concept of zero emissions for electric cars needs to be corrected. A first step would be to clearly show the CO2 emissions produced in electricity generation, and then display this on the showroom energy labels and marketing material.”
This material is protected by copyright Ken Hurst 2013.