How much does an electric car pollute?
Today electric cars already have a better environmental performance than all of the alternatives on the market in terms of both CO2 and polluting emissions, as they are the only technology that allows the total elimination of local nitrogen oxide (NOx) and fine particulate matter (PM) emissions while driving.
Moreover, with a view to carbon-free power generation in the future, an electrified transport system will be sustainable and free from CO2 emissions.
For example, considering the current power generation facilities in Italy (in which renewables contribute 33% of the total mix), it is estimated that the emissions of an electric vehicle "from well to wheel" are about 70% less than those of a vehicle running on petrol and about half of those of a methane vehicle. However, as electricity generation becomes almost totally carbon free – a scenario that is forecasted to become reality by 2050 – “well to wheel” emissions for electric cars will be approximately zero.
Electric vehicles bring improvements in air quality. This makes it possible, especially in large cities, to reduce the direct impact on people's health, resulting in lower medical and healthcare costs.
Finally, let us not forget noise pollution, the noise of traffic and engine exhausts that we have to live with every day. Electric cars are quiet, and their use enables significant improvements in people’s quality of life.