Electric passenger cars, a climate benefit?

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterResearchpeer-review


Mobility plays a major role in the sustainability debate/climate crisis as well as for the society itself. But how should mobility be designed to be climate-friendly in the future? The aim of this poster is to conduct a life cycle assessment (carbon footprint) of an electric, gasoline and diesel car along the value chain. Under which conditions is an electric car a better climate alternative to fossil-fueled vehicles? It seems clear that the production of an electric car is more resource intensive, but how do the environmental damage indicators behave when the use phase is also analyzed? What level of emissions per kilowatthours does the power grid require to get the electric car into better climate conditions? On the basis of three Life Cycle Assessments with the help of Ecoinvent 3.9.1 and with reference to a realistically balanced use phase, a comparison between the car types should be made possible. Because of big uncertainties for all three car types, in regard of assumptions within the end of life treatment [EoLT] and the strong distortion of the comparability within this life cycle phase, the EoLT is not part of this LCA. Additionally, since we need to reverse the climate trend fast (within the next six years) in order to achieve the agreed climate targets, the analysis doesn't include vehicles that run on other alternative engine/ fuel systems, since these engine/ fuel systems are not yet ready for the market within the short target achievement horizon. The analysis is intended to provide decision-makers with the information they need to pursue a more sustainable policy. Electric cars can be a step in the right direction. However, it is not the aim of this poster to make a comparison with other forms of mobility (bus, train, bicycle, etc.), which have an even lower carbon footprint.
Translated title of the contributionElektroautos, ein Segen für das Klima?
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 12 Jun 2023
EventClimate Forum Mittweida - HSMW Mittweida, Mittweida, Germany
Duration: 12 Jun 202316 Jun 2023


ConferenceClimate Forum Mittweida
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