Metro, Newton

Green Newton Co-Hosts Webinar Detailing Benefits of Electric-Powered Vehicles

Kelly Shin and Devan DiLibero from the Green Energy Consumers Alliance advocated for a widespread transition to electric vehicles to limit emission of carbon dioxide at a webinar hosted by Green Newton, a local organization that supports conscious environmental practices.

“A typical gasoline vehicle produces 381 grams of carbon dioxide emissions per mile in New England,” Shin said. “That’s a lot compared to a plug-in hybrid vehicle which only emits 176 grams or a fully battery electric vehicle which would only produce 96 grams. If you’re driving a battery electric vehicle running on green power, there would be no carbon dioxide emissions whatsoever.”

Emissions from gasoline vehicles account for 29 percent of all U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, and that number is higher in the commonwealth, according to Green Newton.

“In Massachusetts, gasoline-based transportation consists of a huge chunk of our overall greenhouse gas emissions, about 42%,” Shin said. “So, driving electric and having the mindset of clean transportation would decrease a lot of those emissions.”

In addition to talking about gas vehicles’ effect on the environment, Shin said electric vehicles are not nearly as dangerous to public health when compared to gas-powered transportation. 

“Since there are no tailpipe emissions on an electric vehicle, there aren’t going to be any particulate matter entering the air and that’s going to decrease the risk of respiratory illnesses like asthma attacks,” she said.

DiLibero said common concerns about electric vehicles are no longer as relevant due to their increased technological capacities. 

“If you’re worried about the range of your vehicle not being able to cover your daily commute, we like to consider that a thing of the past because car companies are coming out with better and better ranges every year,” DiLibero said.

DiLibero also acknowledged one of the aspects of owning an electric vehicle that may feel more daunting to gas-driving car owners: charging the car.

“Charging is one of those things that can seem kind of daunting when you’re first thinking about switching to an electric vehicle because it’s just a different mindset but it is pretty easy when you get the hang of it,” she said.

Owners of electric vehicles can charge their car with three basic levels of charging that power the car at different rates, according to DiLibero.

“Level one charging you can find at home and is a typical wall outlet you may plug your phone into, but is quite slow,” she said. “Level two is like a dryer or stove outlet and would need to be installed at your home. Level three can be found at a public charging station and is very fast.” 

The goal of organizations like Green Energy Consumers Alliance is to educate the public on green energy, and encourage a shift to more sustainable practices, DiLibero said.

“Our mission is to harness the power of energy consumers to speed the transition to a low-carbon future,” she said.

February 5, 2023