Electric cars

Only the other day, i was asked if electric cars are the way forward.. Frankly i had to answer from my opinion 'no' their not, they are only a short term fix to a long term problem.

My reasoning being

1.Excess loading on the grid. Our National grid (electrical distribution network) only the other week was a few mega watts short of collapse, if this occurs it will take a considerable length of time to reinstate the grid.
2. Electric cars require an average charger of 16KW, so if we increase the electric cars on the road by just 10% our 'Grid' will not withstand the additional load.
3. Presently the 'grid' is designed in such a way to only supply each household with a total capacity of 2KW at night, when households with electric cars will be demanding 16KW!! .. Therefore to meet demand more power stations will need to be built and the 'grid' updated, at what cost!!
4. Batteries only have a finite number of charge/discharge cycles-consider the rechargeable batteries in your electric appliances (notably drills), which after a typical number of cycles (200) start to loose capacity, imagine the decreasing range in the electric car as they get older-how long before the batteries require replacement in your electric car and at what cost.
5. Environmental impact.. Lithium (base material in Li ion batteries) is mined in South America (fragile ecosystems often near by) shipped to another country for processing, then on to the end manufacture to be built into the car, at the end of battery life are they effectively recycled!!
6. Charging times and distance between charge, most electric car manufacturers are optimistic with their ranges, so if your on a long run and need to recharge, well 2 hours in a service station will be great, if you can find an available charge point once there is the anticipated number of e cars on the road!!

So is there a viable answer, well yes it already exist in the shape of the hydrogen fuel cell (presently Honda, Hyundai and Toyota have hydrogen cars for sale), but the supply points are woefully inadequate due to lack of funding and a long term strategy by government..

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