The electric car market is growing 10 times faster than its dirty gasoline equivalent

There will be two million electric cars on the road by the end of 2016.

Written by: Alejandro Dávila Fragoso
View the original article on ThinkProgress

evDespite low oil prices, plug-in electric vehicles (EV) are charging forward worldwide, with more than 2 million expected to be on the roads by the end of 2016, according to recent market figures.

Around 312,000 plug-in electric cars were sold during the first half of 2016, according to analysts at EV Volumes — a nearly 50 percent increase over the first half of 2015.

The rise in sales is attributed to a growing Chinese market, followed by sales in Europe and the United States, where Tesla Motors Co. is now dominating the luxury sedan market, according to recent reports.

And though EVs are a fraction of the global vehicle stock — less than 1 percent— the industry is growing about 10 times faster than the traditional vehicle market.

“What we have seen over the past few months is a complete culture change.”

This increase could be significant for public health and the environment in the United States and elsewhere. In the United States, transportation is now topping the electricity sector as the largest source of carbon dioxide emissions, a key factor in human-caused climate change.

Moreover, fossil-fuel vehicles are known to be major contributors of air pollution associated with asthma, allergies, cancer, heart conditions, and premature death, according to the United Nations. And while EVs can reduce air pollution in cities, they also mean less oil extraction, which comes with air pollution and environmental issues of its own.

Right now, EVs’ presence is too small to affect fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector, according to a 2016 International Energy Agency (IEA) report. However, the IEA noted this could soon change, with countries like Norway, the Netherlands, and China boldly turning to EVs as they aim to slash emissions in the next few years.

Norway, a small but rich nation, is now leading the world in EVs. One in three new cars sold there is electric, and that proportion is increasing due to tax breaks and investment in charging infrastructure, The Guardian reported. The Netherlands is following closely, since, like Norway, it wants to phase-out fossil-fuel cars within the next decade. According to a Transport & Environment report released Thursday, EV sales in Europe doubled last year to 145,000.

In China, the rise of EVs is noteworthy, too. One in four electric cars sold worldwide is sold in China. “What we have seen over the past few months is a complete culture change,” said Greg Archer, clean vehicles director at Transport & Environment.

This growth is expected to continue around the world. Some studies suggest that by 2030, EVs could account for two-thirds of all cars in wealthy cities like London and Singapore. That is likely to happen thanks to stricter emissions rules, consumer demand, and falling technology costs.

Batteries, a major factor behind high EV costs, are getting 20 percent cheaper every year, according to EV Volumes.

The State of the Electric Car Market in 4 Charts and Graphs

View the original article here.
I’m guessing that over the past 3 months (or more), your news feed has been dominated by election-related stories. So you may have missed the recent good news about the electric vehicle (EV) market in the United States. To bring you up to speed (and provide a brief break from election hullaballoo) here are 4 graphs that explain what’s been happening in the world of EVs.

Graph 1 : EV sales are charging ahead (see what I did there?)

EV sales in the US just hit a new record. Over 45,000 EVs were sold in the third quarter of 2016, up more than 60 percent from the same time a year ago.


The sales increase can be partly attributed to the second generation Chevy Volt, which became widely available in March 2016 and includes 50 miles of electric range along with a backup gasoline engine. Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) like the Volt allow many drivers to do all of their normal daily driving purely on electricity, without any fear of running out of juice because they can just fill up with gas if the batteries are drained.

Confused about the difference between PHEVs like the Volt and battery electric vehicles (BEVs) like the Nissan LEAF? Check out this explainer post.

Graph 2 : EVs are selling despite lower oil prices

EV sales reached this new high-water mark despite spotty availability of EV models across most of the country and continued lower-than-average oil prices, a factor often cited as hampering EV sales.


Low gas prices do take some of the spotlight off of EVs, despite their lower operating costs compared to gas-powered vehicles. But even with gas hovering around $2.30 a gallon, driving on electricity remains cheaper.

The US Department of Energy estimates that driving on electricity is like paying $1.15 per gallon of gas, and electricity prices have historically been much more stable and predictable than gasoline.

Graph 3: Sales would be even higher if they were more widely available

Generally speaking, EVs are not readily available outside of California. The current lack of availability is due, in part, to the fact that a major policy pushing automakers to offer EVs—theCalifornia Zero Emission Vehicle Program—does not require automakers to sell EVs outside of California (yet).


The requirements of the California program are set to expand to 9 additional states (ME, CT, VT, NY, MA, RI, MD, NJ, OR) in 2018, which together made up 28 percent of combined vehicle sales in 2015. So, the expanded role of policy pushing automakers to sell EVs in major vehicle markets outside of California will likely accelerate aggregate EV sales over the next couple years.

Graph 4 : More automakers are getting in the EV game

2017 should be an exciting year for EVs. Chevy is about to drop the Bolt, an all-electric car with over 200 miles of range and a price tag of around $30,000 after the federal tax credit. Toyota is releasing a new Plug-in Prius, now called Prius Prime, and recent pricing announcements put the cost similar to the price of existing Prius models.

Also in 2017, Tesla is aiming to ship their much-anticipated Model 3, and Hyundai will launch their Ioniq series that will include several electric drive train options. In 2018, Audi is slated to launch an all-electric 300-mile range SUV. Check this post for more detail on other EVs coming to showrooms soon.


Overall, more EV options mean more choices for drivers to choose a vehicle that is cheaper and cleaner than a comparable gasoline model (and fun to drive). Though the EV market still has to overcome some hurdles , the state of play right now provides real reason to be optimistic about where EVs are headed.

Has the Increase of Human Knowledge given us Wisdom? Let’s start the dialogue


By Paul L. Jones, Founder,
Director, Financial Advisory Services for Emerald Skyline Corporation

Muhammad Ali is quoted as saying: “The man who views the world at 50 the same as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.”

It makes sense that as we experience life, we learn from our experiences which changes our view of the world – we call it many things – like growing up or becoming mature. Throughout each of the stages of our lives, we experience life differently which causes us to act differently. Those changes can be infused from our personal lives through the loss of a loved one, the survival of a major illness, the overcoming of addictions or the recovery from a bad marriage or relationship. Or they may be through our education and career, through the rise and fall of a business, the lessons of a new course of study, the influence of colleagues and clients. And they may be spiritual – developing a deeper relationship with our God – however we conceive Him/Her to be, and what becomes important in the service of God and humanity. Ideally, we mature through all of these experiences and we move into Wisdom.

Wisdom is defined as “the quality of having experience, knowledge and good judgment; the quality of being wise; the soundness of an action or decision with regard to the application of experience, knowledge and good judgment; or the body of knowledge and principles that develops within a specified society or period.”

The process of maturation in an individual can be viewed as the evolution of a person. And just as a person evolves, so does society: humanity as a species is dramatically different now than it was just 30 years ago – pre-internet, pre-smart phone, pre-nanotechnology, pre so many things that have changed how we experience and view the world.

In fact, the pace of human advancement has been accelerating throughout time. you can select many gauges by which to measure progress and change, patents for instance; but, there is one yard stick that I think gives us the greatest insight into the pace of change which is R. Buckminster Fuller’s Knowledge Doubling Curve which he introduced in his 1982 book, Critical Path.

A futurist and inventor, Fuller estimated that if we took all the knowledge that mankind had accumulated at the time of AD One, or One CE (Common Era), as equal to one unit of information, which took humcurveans nearly 198,000 years to accumulate, and used that as the benchmark; the amount of human knowledge would take another 1,500 years to double. With the introduction of the printing press, the pace of growth in human knowledge started to accelerate with another doubling occurring in about 250 years. By 1900 (around 150 years), human knowledge had doubled again. By the end of World War II, knowledge was doubling every 25 years. At the time Critical Path was published, Fuller estimated that human knowledge was doubling every 18 months. Now, Human knowledge is estimated to double every 13 months. With the internet and other advances in human communication and data storage, IBM predicts that human knowledge is soon to double every 12 hours.


This growth in human knowledge has lead to great advancements in the quality of life for much of humanity with scientific and technological advancements leading to improved hygiene, literacy, agricultural production, mass production, and medicine.

Further, these advancements lead to the first real increase in global per capita GDP which has been estimated to average $158 per annum (adjusted to 2013 dollars) from pre-history until the Industrial Revolution.   (According to a 1998 academic paper entitled “Estimates of World GDP, One Million BC to Present” by J. Bradford De Long of the UC Berkeley Department of Economics, GDP per capital started escalating around AD 1600 with consistent growth occurring after 1800).

The growth of knowledge and information accelerated in the 18th and 19th Centuries with a doubling of human knowledge translated into improved opportunities for a better life: People were empowered with knowledge which lead to the end of the feudal system and the introduction of democracy in politics, social structures and economics.

With the pace of human knowledge and the changes that it brings to our daily lives increasing exponentially, the natural reaction is to hold onto the bar and try to slow down the ride – like we do in a roller coaster or a vehicle traveling faster than is comfortable….

All this information and knowledge and experience should also lead to wisdom, right?opportun

Unfortunately, however, billions of people – including many of our political, religious and social leaders – still live as if they were in the Middle Ages.

The changes have made our lives better in many ways – but they have come with a price.   The following diagram from Wiki-books on “Economic History” is a diagram of societal development: hunter/gatherer, pastoralist/horticulturalist, agrarian, industrial, and post-industrial. It also ties each stage of development to the important consequences of societal development, namely: surplus, denser populations, specialization, technology and inequality (As a dramatic example of this inequality, the Toilet Board Coalition just reported that over one billion people live with no alternative to open defecation while 2.5 billion people in the world do not have access to proper sanitation which is in stark contrast to the standard of living experienced in the First World.) See:



As noted in an October 2012 article by Samuel Arbesman in BBC Future, “our lives are governed by centuries of advances that haven’t been random….there’s a pattern that reveals how our knowledge has changed over time….”

Understanding this pattern, Mr. Arbesman states, “helps us to understand something fundamental to our success as a species.”

In technology, Gordon Moore, a retired chemist and physicist who was a co-creator of the Intel Corporation, wrote a paper in 1965 entitled, Cramming More Components onto Integrated Circuits. In this short paper, Moore predicted that the number of possible components that can be placed on a single circuit for a fixed cost would double every year. This thesis, based on just four data points, has been proven true and is known as “Moore’s Law.”

If you generalize Moore’s Law from integrated circuits and chips to information technology, it explains extremely regular changes in technology over the past few centuries.

A primary reason that everything from the growth in knowledge to the advances in science and technology follows this pattern is related to the concept of cumulative knowledge.   All advances are built on the information available already. Like this article is based on the information and research that has been done by many people and is available now on the internet.

Mr. Arbresman continues:

” So, while exponential growth is not a self-fulfilling proposition, there is feedback, which leads to a sort of technological imperative: as there is more technological or scientific knowledge on which to grow, new technologies increase the speed at which they grow. But why does this continue to happen? Technological or scientific change doesn’t happen automatically; people are needed to create new ideas and concepts. The answer is that in addition to knowledge accumulation, we need to understand another factor that’s important to knowledge progression: population growth.”

In an August 1993 academic article published in The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Michael Kremer presents the case that the growth in knowledge and technology is directly linked to population growth and that technological growth is proportional to population growth.

There are now over seven billion humans on this earth – which both fuels innovation, the growth of knowledge, scientific discovery and technology while also causing an extreme demand on natural capital – the stock of finite resources which includes geology, soil, air, water and all living things from which humans use to sustain life.

Now, the question is – with 200,000 years of history and all this data, information and knowledge, have we grown wise?

What would Ali think? What do you think?

To be continued…..