Saturday, May 13, 2017

If India Succeeds, "King Coal" Will Be Back -- May 13, 2017

By the end of the next decade -- that would be by 2029 -- India has plans to require that all cars sold in that country will be coal-fired -- Bloomberg. This does not qualify the country for Einstein's definition of insanity because this is something "new" for India -- and something no other country has tried. But still, intuitively, it seems it should make the list.

There are two fallacies, of course: one, there won't possibly be enough EVs manufactured to meet India's need, unless Elon Musk ramps up to a gazillion cars/week:
India’s potential plan to sell only electric cars by the end of next decade would require nearly eight times the global stock of such vehicles, according to the International Energy Agency.
The country would need to sell more than 10 million electric cars in 2030, compared with the almost 1.3 million on the road worldwide in 2015, the agency said in an emailed response to questions. The goal also equals 10 percent of the 2030 target for electric vehicles on the road globally agreed to in the Paris climate talks.
Second, it appears the politicians who have thought up this bizarre plan have no idea how inefficient the whole process is, and will require huge amounts of coal:
While the details are yet to be worked out, “it is an ambitious plan nonetheless,” the IEA said. “Regardless, the exact formulation of the target and the extent of its long-term achievement, it is a good step that will help India to be among the global leaders in deploying a technology that is crucial to temper increasing oil import needs, local air pollution in cities, and limit CO2 emissions.”
EVs may solve their urban problems with regard to smog, but it will simply shift CO2 emissions (for what it's worth) to another location -- namely the power plants that use coal.

Of course, the Indian government will eventually put a huge CO2 tax on coal-fired plants that the country has effectively mandated in the first place.

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