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Jefferies on the carbon challenges in electric vehicle manufacturing

Electric vehicle manufacturing currently faces an “embedded carbon” challenge, says Jefferies’ Simon Powell.

“To gain the environmental dividend that governments are looking for, users are going to have to keep them longer, drive them further than they may have done with a conventional internal combustion energy vehicle,” Powell, head of global thematic research at the firm, told CNBC’s “Street Signs Asia” on Wednesday.

He explained that a “huge amount” of carbon is emitted when materials such as steel, aluminum and glass are created and put together to manufacture vehicles. He said the problem is compounded for electric vehicles, which currently tend to be heavier on average than their gasoline-powered counterparts.

“When they leave the factory, these (electric vehicles) are at a disadvantage,” he said. “They contain more steel. The brakes are bigger. The battery packs are certainly heavier.”

The relatively higher weight of electric vehicles today is a result of manufacturers’ focus on the range for these cars, Powell said. Unlike cars which run on internal combustion engines that have been around for decades, the charging infrastructure for electric vehicles is considerably less developed globally.

Importance of ‘green steel’

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2021-05-26 20:44:09

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