Although all-electric vehicles (EVs) produce zero tailpipe emissions, there are upstream emissions of greenhouse gases from electricity production. Using electricity production data by source and state, the DOE’s Alternative Fuels Data Center has estimated the annual carbon dioxide (CO2e)-equivalent emissions of a typical EV.
The national average is 4,815 pounds (2,184 kg) of CO2-equivalent emissions for a typical EV per year as compared to the average gasoline-powered car which produces 11,435 pounds (5,187 kg) of CO2-equivalent emissions annually.
|Annual well-to-wheel emissions from a typical ev by state, 2015. Source: DOE. Click to enlarge.|
EVs charging in Vermont are estimated to produce the fewest emissions—oil and gas make up only 1.2% of the electricity sources in the state while cleaner sources such as nuclear, hydro, biomass, wind, and solar make up the rest.
West Virginia’s electricity production is 95.7% from coal, making it the state with the most well-to-wheel CO2-equivalent emissions.
|Well-to-Wheel emissions from a typical EV by state, 2015. Data: DOE. Click to enlarge.|