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Electric vehicles release more toxic emissions, are worse for the environment than gas-powered cars: study

Electric vehicles release more toxic particles into the atmosphere and are worse for the environment than their gas-powered counterparts, according to a resurfaced study.

The study, published by emissions data firm Emission Analytics, was released in 2022 but has attracted a wave of attention this week after being cited in a Wall Street Journal op-ed Sunday.

It found that brakes and tires on EVs release 1,850 times more particle pollution compared to modern tailpipes, which have “efficient” exhaust filters, bringing gas-powered vehicles’ emissions to new lows.

Today, most vehicle-related pollution comes from tire wear.

As heavy cars drive on light-duty tires — most often made with synthetic rubber made from crude oil and other fillers and additives — they deteriorate and release harmful chemicals into the air, according to Emission Analytics.

Because EVs are on average 30% heavier, brakes and tires on the battery-powered cars wear out faster than on standard cars.

Emission Analytics found that tire wear emissions on half a metric tonne of battery weight in an EV are more than 400 times as great as direct exhaust particulate emissions.

For reference, half a metric tonne is equivalent to roughly 1,100 pounds. The most popular EV in the US, Tesla’s Model Y, boasts a lithium-ion battery that weighs in at a hefty 1,836 pounds.

Another sought-after electric model, Ford’s F-150 Lightning pickup truck, also has an approximately 1,800-pound battery.


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Electric cars release more toxic emissions than petrol-powered vehicles and are worse for the environment