ELECTRIC TRANSIT AND SCHOOL BUS SYSTEMS REDUCE LITTLE CO2, ARE NOT COST-EFFECTIVE

China has made electric buses and EVs a priority in urban areas to reduce excessive air pollution, due to: 1) coal-fired power plants, and 2) increased vehicle traffic.

 

The US has much less of a pollution problem than China, except in its larger urban areas. 

The US uses much less coal, more domestic natural gas, and CO2-free nuclear is still around.

 

New England has a pollution problem in its southern urban areas.

Vermont has a minor pollution problem in Burlington and a few other urban areas.

 

RE folks want to “Electrify Everything”; an easily uttered slogan

It would require:                                                                     

 

- Additional power plants, such as nuclear, wind, solar, hydro, bio

- Additional grid augmentation/expansion to connect wind and solar systems, and to carry the loads for EVs and heat pumps

- Additional battery systems to store midday solar output surges for later use, i.e., DUCK-curve management.

- Additional centralized, command/control/orchestrating (turning off/on appliances, heat pumps, EVs, etc.) by utilities to avoid overloading distribution and high voltage electric grids regarding:

 

1) Charging times of EVs and operating times of heat pumps, and major appliances

2) Demands of commercial/industrial businesses

RE Folks Want More EVs and Buses Bought With “Free” Money

 

RE folks drive the energy priorities of New England governments. RE folks want to use about $40 million of “free” federal COVID money and Volkswagen Settlement money to buy electric transit and school buses to deal with a minor pollution problem in a few urban areas in Vermont. RE folks urge Vermonters to buy:

 

Mass Transit Buses

Electric: $750,000 - $1,000,000 each, plus infrastructures, such as indoor parking, high-speed charging systems.

Standard Diesel: $380,000 - $420,000; indoor parking and charging systems not required.

 

School Buses

Electric: $330,000 - $375,000, plus infrastructures

Standard Diesel: about $100,000

https://atlaspolicy.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/Electric-Buses-a...

  

This article shows the 2 Proterra transit buses in Burlington, VT, would reduce CO2 at very high cost per metric ton, and the minor annual operating cost reduction would be overwhelmed by the cost of amortizing $million buses that last about 12 to 15 years.

 

The $40 million of “free” money would be far better used to build zero-energy, and energy-surplus houses for suffering households; such housing would last at least 50 to 75 years.

NOTE: Spending huge amounts of borrowed capital on various projects that 1) have very poor financials, and 2) yield minor reductions in CO2 at high cost, is a recipe for 1) low economic efficiency, and 2) low economic growth, on a state-wide and nation-wide scale, which would 1) adversely affect Vermont and US competitiveness in markets, and 2) adversely affect living standards and 3) inhibit unsubsidized/efficient/profitable job creation.

 

Real Costs of Government RE Programs Likely Will Remain Hidden

 

Vermont’s government engaging in electric bus demonstration programs, financed with “free” money, likely will prove to be expensive undertakings, requiring hidden subsidies, white-washing and obfuscation.

 

Lifetime spreadsheets, with 1) turnkey capital costs, 2) annual cashflows, 3) annual energy cost savings, 4) annual CO2 reductions, and 5) cost of CO2 reduction/metric ton, with all assumptions clearly stated and explained, likely will never see the light of day.

  

Including Amortizing Capital Cost for a Rational Approach to Projects

 

RE folks do not want to include amortizing costs, because it makes the financial economics of their dubious RE projects appear dismal. This is certainly the case with expensive electric buses. If any private-enterprise business were to ignore amortizing costs, it would be out of business in a short time.

 

Capital cost of electric school bus, plus charger, $327,500 + $25,000 = $352,500

Battery system cost, $100,000, for a 100-mile range.

Capital cost of diesel school bus, $100,000

Additional capital cost “to go electric” 352500 - 100000 = $252,500

 

Lifetime, A-to-Z Analysis Includes Combustion, Upstream, Embodied and Downstream CO2

 

Most CO2 analyses, on an energy use basis, significantly understate CO2 emissions. Much more realistic CO2 analyses would be on a lifetime, A-to-Z basis. Such analyses have been performed for at least 75 years in business. Engineering colleges have standard project economics courses in their curricula. Lifetime, A-to-Z analyses regarding energy projects would include:

 

1) Upstream CO2 of energy for extraction, processing and transport to a user

2) Embodied CO2 of expensive batteries, from extraction of materials to installation in a bus

3) Embodied CO2 of $352,500 electric buses vs $100,000 diesel buses

4) Embodied CO2 of balance-of-system components

5) Embodied CO2 of much more expensive electric bus parking facilities, with a Level 2 or high-speed charger for each bus, than for a diesel bus parking facility with a diesel pump.

6) Downstream CO2 of disposal of batteries, etc.

 

Any CO2 advantage of electric buses vs diesel buses would be less, on a lifetime, A-to-Z basis. The cost of CO2 reduction of electric buses would increase from about $1,700/metric ton (energy only basis) to about $2,000/Mt (lifetime, A-to-Z basis).

 

Vehicle-to-Grid Operation, VtG

 

Proponents of VtG claim electric school buses could be used by utilities, to have the batteries absorb a fraction of midday solar bulges, and deliver that electricity, minus about 20% losses, to the gid during late afternoon/early evening, when peak demands are occurring, and solar has gone to sleep until mid-morning the next day.

 

As part of managing midday-solar DUCK curves, 10 electric school buses, capital cost at least $3.5 million, already partially charged, would absorb 500 kWh during midday and discharge 400 kWh from 5 pm to 8 pm (peak demand hours).

 

The $100,000 batteries, part of a $325,000 electric school bus, would have extra wear and tear, which would shorten their 15-year lives. This is like doing yardwork in a tuxedo.

 

A utility could purchase a 600-kWh battery system, for a turnkey cost of about $450,000, and achieve the same results.

PART 1; ELECTRIC TRANSIT BUSES

 

Electric Transit Buses in Burlington, VT, are an Information Black Hole

The Burlington buses have been in operation on various routes, starting in March 2020, but nothing has been made public regarding:

 

1) Travel data, such as routes, daily miles and accumulated miles

2) Total number of paying riders, revenues

2) Wall meter electricity consumption by bus charging systems

3) Other maintenance and operating costs

4) Repairs made under Proterra warranty

 

This article had to rely on several National Renewable Energy Laboratory, NREL, reports of similar Proterra buses in service in other states.

 

https://vermontbiz.com/news/2020/january/28/green-mountain-transit-...

https://www.sustainable-bus.com/news/electric-bus-range-focus-on-el...

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-01-17/battery-electric...

 

Analysis of Two Proterra Electric Buses in Burlington, Vermont

 

The turnkey capital cost of 2 buses was over $2 million, including infrastructure.

The buses, battery capacity 324 kWh DC, are parked, charged, and maintained in a Green Mountain Transit garage.

Proterra estimated the range at 140 miles for three seasons, and 100 miles for winter months, new batteries. 

 

See table 1

 

Charging/Discharging: Charging losses, wall outlet to battery connections, is about 13.5%, for a mix of low-speed and high-speed charging.

High-speed charging has less losses, but shortens battery life, decreases battery efficiency, etc.

Batteries should not be discharged to less than 10%, and charged above 90%, as that would shorten life, decrease battery efficiency, etc. Batteries should have a 15% reserve for operating flexibility regarding roads, traffic, weather, route length, etc. This means the day-to-day working range would be about 65% x 324 = 210.60 kWh DC, new battery. See pages 15, 16 of URL

https://ww2.arb.ca.gov/sites/default/files/classic/regact/2019/act2...

 

Battery Aging: As batteries age, they have greater resistance to charging, hold less charge, and have greater resistance to discharging, i.e., each mile of travel would require more electricity from the wall outlet, and the working range would become less.

Battery aging of EVs and electric school buses is at least 1%/y, because they are driven, on average, about 9,000 and 12,000 miles/y, respectively.

Battery aging of electric transit buses is at least 1.5 %/y, because they are driven about 30,000 miles/y.

At 1.5%/y, their capacity reduction would be at least 10%, at the 7-y mid-life, and at least 19%, at the 14-y near-end-life.

Some reports use 2.4%/y, which may be excessive, because battery quality is improving. See four URLs.

https://www.geotab.com/blog/ev-battery-health/

 

See page 14 of URL

https://www.mjbradley.com/sites/default/files/EVIElectricBus101FINA...

 

See page 24 of URL for battery degradation and reserves

https://www.mjbradley.com/sites/default/files/MTSElectricBusFinalRe...

 

See page 7, 8, 9, 10 of URL for battery available energy

https://www.nrel.gov/docs/fy21osti/76932.pdf

 

NOTE: Per Battery University, for long life, say 15 years, Li-ion batteries should not be discharged to less than 15%, and not be charged in excess of 80%; i.e., a working range of 65%. That range also happens to have the highest efficiency

This would limit VtG “benefits” of electric school buses and regular EVs. See URLs

 

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/08/180801093718.htm

https://www.cnbc.com/2019/02/05/tesla-jaguar-and-nissan-evs-lose-po...

Normal Driving: 2020/2021, all-wheel-drive, Tesla Models 3 and Y have a real-axle, internal-permanent-magnet, synchronous-reluctance motor, IPM-SynRM, and a front-axle, induction motor, IM, each with a DC/AC inverter.  

An IPM-SynRM, up to 96% efficient, is more advantageous in urban driving, because of the higher torque and efficiency at lower vehicle speeds (lower motor RPMs).

An IM, up to 94% efficient, is more advantageous at highway speeds, because of the higher torque and efficiency at higher vehicle speeds (higher motor RPMs).

https://cleantechnica.com/2018/03/11/tesla-model-3-motor-in-depth/

During normal driving:

About 80% (cold climates) to 95% (Spring/Fall) is fed from the main battery, via DC/AC inverters, to the motors

About 5% (Spring/Fall) to 20% (cold climates) is fed from the main battery, via a DC-to-DC converter, to the standard 12V battery, which provides power to operate auxiliaries, such as cabin and battery heating and cooling, power steering, defrosting windows/mirrors, energy management, lights, heating seats, instruments, sound systems, etc. 

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/er.5700

Regeneration: Some of the battery discharge energy is returned to the battery by means of regenerative braking, instead of friction braking. 

During slowing down, the electric-motor/generator generates AC power, which is fed, via the on-board AC/DC inverter, to the main battery, and via a DC-to-DC converter, to the 12V battery.

Typically, regeneration is turned off, if roads are covered with snow/ice, to prevent the bus from sliding.

 

If a bus route is at low speeds, with frequent start/stops, regeneration is minimal.

The overall efficiency of regeneration is about 60% and friction braking is up to 25% of total energy from wall outlet.

As a result, Tesla owners report regeneration at 10 to 15%, during city travel, and at about 7%, during highway travel.

In this article, regeneration was assumed at a fleet-annual-average of 15%, which may be too optimistic. See page 21 of URL

 

https://www.transit.dot.gov/sites/fta.dot.gov/files/docs/research-i...

http://www.mate.tue.nl/mate/pdfs/12673.pdf

 

NOTE: Some Tesla Model S drivers recovered as much as 32% of energy use while driving up a hill and down. That experiment would not be applicable to a city bus used on a route. 

 

Exceeding Recommended Capacity Percent Range: 

Energy to wheels and auxiliaries to travel from A to B is the same for any year. 

Available energy, including regeneration, would be 312.137 kWh DC, mild days, new battery. 

Battery charge change would be 312.137/140 = 2.230 kWh DC/mile, per vehicle meter

Range varies with roads, traffic, weather, route length, passenger load, etc. 

 

If desired range, on average, would be 140 miles, the required purchase at the wall outlet would be 312.250 kWh AC. 

The charging utilization would be 271.423/324 = 84% of capacity, which exceeds the recommended 65%, for long useful service life.

The range would be about 115 miles at age 7, and about 109 miles at age 14

All ranges would be up to 40% less during cold weather.

Table 1/Battery Aging

New

Mid-life

Near End-life

Age

0

7

14

Travel, miles

210000

420000

Rated capacity, kWh DC

324

324

324

Capacity aging factor, 1.5%/y

1.000

0.9010

0.8118

Aged capacity, kWh DC

324

292

263

Working capacity, 65%, kWh DC (recommend)

210.600

189.751

170.975

.

Desired range, miles (1)

140

115

109

Wall outlet meter, kWh AC (required purchase)

312.250

259.300

249.100

Losses during charging other than battery, %

8.50

8.50

8.50

Energy to battery, kWh DC

285.71

237.26

227.93

Battery charging loss, %

5.00

5.55

6.16

Battery loss, kWh DC

14.29

13.17

14.04

Energy in battery, kWh DC, 84% (exceeds recommend)

271.423

224.093

213.889

Energy in battery, w/15% regen, kWh DC (2)

312.137

257.707

245.972

Battery discharging loss, %

5.00

5.55

6.16

Battery loss, kWh DC

15.61

14.30

15.15

To DC to AC inverter, kWh DC, (3)

296.530

243.406

230.823

Inverter loss, %

3.000

3.000

3.000

Motor/generator loss, %

4.000

4.000

4.000

Transmission loss, %

3.000

3.000

3.000

To wheels, kWh DC (4)

267.845

219.860

208.495

.

Battery charge change, kWh DC/mile, (2)/(1)

2.230

2.242

2.257

To wheels, kWh DC/mile, (4)/(1)

1.913

1.913

1.913

Energy Cost Reduction

Diesel bus energy cost: 30,000 miles/4.25 mpg x $2.00/gal, bulk price = $14,118/y, or $0.471/mile

Electric bus energy cost: 30,000 miles x 312.25 kWh AC/140 miles x $0.10/kWh AC, no demand charges = $6691/y, or $0.22/mile

Energy cost reduction would be $2,868/y, on a $1 million-plus investment/bus that lasts about 12 - 15 years.

 

The cost of amortizing $1 million at 3.5%/y and 15 years is $85,786/y, or 85786//30000 =$2.86/mile

That cost completely overwhelms any possible reduction in energy and maintenance costs.

https://www.myamortizationchart.com

 

CO2 Reduction

Diesel bus CO2: (30,000 miles/4.25 mpg) x 22.163 lb CO2/gal, combustion x 1 Mt/2204.62 lb = 71 Mt/y

Electric bus CO2: 30,000 miles x 312.25 kWh AC/140 miles x 317 g/kWh AC, per ISO-NE, from fuel to power plants x 1 Mt/1 million g = 21 Mt/y

 

Avoided CO2 for two buses is 2 x (71 - 21) = 100 Mt/y  

Amortizing cost of $2 million at 3.5%/y and 15 years is $171,571/y, or 171572/100 =$1,716/Mt

Vermonters have many other ways to reduce CO2 at much less cost per metric ton.

 

https://vermontbiz.com/news/2020/january/28/green-mountain-transit-...

https://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/some-ne-state-governme...

https://www.efficiencyvermont.com/Media/Default/docs/white-papers/e...

 

Analysis of Three Proterra Electric Buses in King County, Seattle, Washington

 

On February 2016, King County Metro transit agency in Seattle, Washington (mild climate), began operation of three, 42.5-foot, fast-charge, electric transit buses, built by Proterra. The 2017 NREL report of the project was based on 12 months of data from April 2016 through March 2017.

 

Per NREL report:

 

Electric bus: The electricity taken from a wall outlet, kWh AC, is about 16.0% greater than the kWh DC charged into the battery, because of various charging losses.

 

The electric bus required 2.36 kWh DC/mile from the battery. The electricity taken from the wall outlet is 2.36/(1 - 0.16) = 2.81 kWh AC/mile, which at 20.35 c/kWh AC, would cost 57.2 c/mile. See Note

 

NOTE: The high electricity cost is due to demand charges during battery charging.

 

Travel 27,709 miles/y; availability 80.6%. See table 3.5

Overall operating cost = Electricity, 57.2 c/mile + Maintenance, 26 c/mile = 82.2 c/mile. See table 3.10

 

Diesel bus: The diesel bus achieved 5.3 mpg, or 0.1887 gal/mile, which at $1.60/gal (bulk price), would cost 30.2 c/mile

 

Travel 23,110 miles/y; availability 86.4%

Overall operating cost = Diesel fuel, 30.2 c/mile + Maintenance, 46 c/mile = 77.2 c/mile. See table 3.10

 

The cost of amortizing $1 million at 3.5%/y and 15 years is $85,786/y, or 85786//30000 =$2.86/mile

That cost completely overwhelms any possible reduction in energy and maintenance costs.

https://www.myamortizationchart.com

 

NOTE:

The electricity cost per mile, based on utility electric bills, represents the “wall-outlet” cost per mile. It includes battery charging losses. The electricity cost per mile depends on: 1) electric rates, 2) demand charges, and 3) taxes, fees and surcharges.

The US EPA bases its EV mileage testing on kWh AC from “wall outlet”.

An EV displays the kWh DC in the battery, and the kWh DC used to make a trip; charging losses are not included  

PART 2; ELECTRIC SCHOOL BUSES

 

Electric school buses are beginning to be adopted by a few US school districts as part of reducing CO2.

The main impetus is “free” Volkswagen Settlement funds, and “free” federal COVID funds, to provide “free” electric school buses to school districts.

 

Electric school buses have significantly less O&M costs than diesel buses.

However, that reduction is minuscule, compared with amortizing the turnkey capital cost of the buses

 

O&M operating data of electric school buses have been insufficient to perform any analysis, except for a few cases. This article will show the impact of climate on school bus performance and O&M expenses.

 

- Salt Spring Island, SSI, British Columbia, Canada, has a mild climate

- Massachusetts, New England, has a cold climate

 

The SSI data includes diesel and electric bus maintenance costs, which were prorated to complete the MA data.

The travel was assumed at 12,000 miles per year, the US average for school buses.

 

The SSI project involved 10 Lion electric school buses.

Turnkey CAPEX; Can $4.375 million, or US $3.5 million

Travel for all buses; 139,345 km, or 87,091 miles, or 8,709 miles/bus

http://saltspringcommunityenergy.com/Electric_Schoolbus_Study/SD64_...

 

The MA project involved 3 Lion electric school buses

Turnkey CAPEX; $1.05 million

Travel for all buses; 13,902 miles, or 4,634 miles/bus

https://www.mass.gov/files/documents/2018/04/30/Mass%20DOER%20EV%20...

 

O&M Cost Reduction per Bus; see tables 1 and 2

 

Diesel bus maintenance for US and Canada = 23.0 c/mile

Electric bus maintenance for US and Canada = 6.4 c/mile

Values from SSI report

 

Electricity, energy, commercial/institutional rate; 13 c//kWh, per VEIC

Electricity demand, controlled charging, assumed for SSI at 25%, and for MA at 30%, of energy cost

 

SSI bus electricity = 0.14 Mt CO2/y x 1,000,000 g/Mt x 1 yr/8,709 miles x 1 kWh AC/9 g CO2 = 1.745 kWh AC/mile.

See spreadsheet in SSI URL

 

SSI electric buses averaged 1.745 kWh AC/mile, from the wall outlet, to have 1.325 kWh DC/mile in the battery (near the low end of the Lion range); mild climates require less electricity/mile. See table 2

 

MA electric buses would require 1.890 kWh AC/mile, from the wall outlet, to have 1.390 kWh DC/mile in the battery (near the high end of the Lion range); cold climates require greater electricity/mile. See table 2

A separate fuel oil-fired heating system is required for cabin heating, which emits CO2. See Note

 

MA diesel bus mileage; 6.3 mpg, cold climate, per VEIC

SSI diesel bus mileage; 1.15 x 6.3 = 7.25 mpg; mild climates have better mpg and require minimal, or no, cabin heating, per author assumption.

 

SSI electricity cost = 1.745 kWh AC/mile x 13 c/mile = 2722, energy + 0.25 x 2722, demand = US $3,403/y, or 28.4 c/mile    

SSI electric bus total cost = 6.4, maintenance + 28.4, electricity = 34.8 c/mile; no cabin heating.

 

SSI diesel bus fuel = 12000 miles x 1 gal/7.25 miles x $2.50/gal = $4,138, or 34.5 c/mile. See Note

SSI diesel bus total cost = 23, maintenance + 34.5, fuel = 57.5 c/mile

SSI cost reduction per bus = 57.5 - 34.8 = 22.8 c/mile, or $2,732/y

 

NOTE: Diesel fuel cost (bulk purchase), author used $2.50/gal, for this calculation. The MA pilot program used $2.00/gal in 2018.

See section VEIC EVALUATION OF THE MA-PILOT PROGRAM

 

Amortizing the capital cost difference; ($352,500 - $100,000) at 3.5%/y for 15 years = $21,661/y, or 180.1 c/mile, about 7.9 times the annual cost reduction!!

 

MA electricity cost = 1.890 kWh AC/mile x 13 c/kWh = 2948 + 0.30 x 2948, demand = US $3,833/y, or 31.9 c/mile

MA electric bus cabin heating cost; 12000 miles x 1 gal/78 miles x $2.93/gal = 3.8 c/mile

MA electric bus total cost = 6.4, maintenance + 31.9, electricity + 3.8, cabin heating = 42.1 c/mile

MA diesel bus total cost = 23, maintenance + 39.7, fuel = 62.7 c/mile

MA cost reduction per bus = 62.7 - 42.1 = 20.6 c/mile, or $2,470/y

 

Amortizing the capital cost difference ($352,500 - $100,000) at 3.5%/y for 15 years = $21,661/y, or 180.1 c/mile, about 8.8 times the annual cost reduction per bus!!

 

Cost Summary of SSI and MA Electric School Buses, with and without amortizing

 

Table 1 shows the reduction in energy and operating cost, if an electric school bus replaces a diesel school bus.

The maintenance data for the Massachusetts, New England (MA) buses was pro-rated from real-world operating data of the bus system on Salt Spring Island, British Columbia (SSI)

 

Amortizing the capital cost difference of only the buses is ($352,500 - $100,000) at 3.5%/y for 15 years = $21,661/y, or 180.1 c/mile, about 238.0/22.8 = 7.9 times the annual operating cost reduction!!

 

SSI electric school buses are 238.0/57.5 = 4.14 times more expensive to operate than diesel buses.

MA electric school buses are 243.2/62.7 = 3.88 times more expensive to operate than diesel buses.

 

The ratios would be even greater for complete electric and diesel bus systems, because electric school buses would need much more elaborate parking areas with battery charging infrastructures.

 

Table 2

Energy

Maint.

Cabin Htg

Total

Amortizing

Total

Times

c/mile

c/mile

c/mile

c/mile

c/mile

c/mile

SSI

 

Diesel

34.5

23.0

 

57.5

Electric

28.4

6.4

none

34.8

Reduction

6.1

16.6

 

22.8

180.5

238.0

7.9

MA

 

Diesel

39.7

23.0

 

62.7

Electric

31.9

6.4

3.8

42.1

Reduction

4.0

16.6

 

20.6

180.5

243.2

8.8

CO2 Reduction per Bus

 

NE Grid CO2; 334 g/kWh; that value would slowly decrease as more wind and solar would be added to the electricity mix.

Combustion CO2 of diesel fuel and cabin heating fuel oil is 10.285 kg/gal. See Note.

 

SSI electric bus CO2 = 1.745 kWh AC/mile x 12000 miles x 334 g/kWh x 1000000 g/Mt = 6.99 Mt/y; no cabin heating.

 

MA electric bus CO2 = 1.890 kWh AC/mile x 12000 miles x 334 g/kWh x 1000000 g/Mt = 7.58 Mt/y

MA electric bus cabin heating CO2 = 12000 miles/y x 1 gal/78 miles x 10.285 kg/gal x 1 Mt/1000 kg = 1.58 Mt/y

Total electric bus CO2 = 7.58 + 1.38 = 9.16 Mt/y

 

SSI diesel bus CO2 = 12000 miles x 1 gal/7.25 miles x 10.285 kg/gal x 1 Mt/1000 kg = 17.02 Mt/y

MA diesel bus CO2 = 12000 miles x 1 gal/6.30 miles x 10.285 kg/gal x 1 Mt/1000 kg = 19.59 Mt/y

 

SSI CO2 reduction per bus = 17.02, diesel - 6.99, electric = 10.03 Mt/y

MA CO2 reduction per bus = 19.59, diesel - 9.16, electric = 10.43 Mt/y

 

MA electric buses, cold climate, have 9.16/6.99 = 31% more CO2 than SSI electric buses, mild climate

 

NOTE: Energy efficiency measures to reduce energy consumption, CO2, and energy costs, such as by 1) exchanging traditional light bulbs for LEDs, and 2) insulating and sealing energy-hog housing and other buildings, and 3) increasing the mileage of existing gasoline vehicles, would cost $50 to $200 per metric ton, much less than the $2,076/Mt of electric school buses.

  

NOTE: Combustion CO2eq/gallon is 10.21 kg CO2 + 0.41 g x 25/454, CH4 + 0.08 g x 298/454, N2O = 10.285 kg. See table

https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2015-07/documents/emissi...

 

Table 3/Cold versus Mild Climate

SSI

SSI CO2

MA

MA CO2

Climate

mild

Mt/y

cold

Mt/y

Buses

10

3

Turnkey CAPEX, Can $

4375000

Turnkey CAPEX, US $

3500000

1050000

Travel, km

139345

Travel all buses, mile

87091

13902

.

Diesel maintenance, Can $

25082

4004

Diesel maintenance, US $

20066

3203

Diesel maintenance, US c/mile

23.0

23.0

.

Electric maintenance, Can $

6967

1112

Electric maintenance, US $

5574

890

Electric maintenance, US c/mile

6.4

6.4

.

Travel basis per bus, mile/y

12000

12000

12000

12000

Electricity, kWh AC/mile

1.745

1.890

Electricity, kWh AC/y

20940

20940

22680

22680

Electricity, cost, US c/kWh

13

13

Electricity, cost, $/y

2722

2948

Demand, % of electricity cost

25

30

Demand, US $/y

681

885

Total electricity cost, $/y

3403

3833

Total electricity cost, $/mile

28.4

31.9

Electric bus total, $/mile

34.8

42.1

.

Diesel fuel cost, bulk, $/gal

2.50

2.50

Diesel mileage, mile/gal

7.25

7.25

6.30

6.30

Diesel fuel cost, gal/y

4138

4762

Diesel fuel cost, c/mile

34.5

39.7

Diesel bus total, c/mile

57.5

62.7

.

Cost reduction, c/mile

22.8

20.6

Cost reduction per bus, $/y (1)

2732

2470

.

CO2, g/kWh

335

335

Diesel and fuel oil CO2, kg/gal

10.285

10.285

Cabin heating CO2, Mt/y

0.00

1.58

Electric bus CO2, Mt

6.99

9.16

Diesel bus CO2, Mt

17.02

19.59

CO2 reduction, Mt/y

10.03

10.43

.

Amortizing cost diff., $/y (2)

21661

21661

Ratio of amort’g/cost reduction, (2)/(1)

7.9

 

8.8

 

CO2 Reduction, $/Mt

2160

2076

 

MASSACHUSETTS ELECTRIC SCHOOL BUS PILOT PROGRAM 

 

The electric bus pilot program was funded by the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) with about $2 million, and administered by the Massachusetts State Department of Energy Resources. Vermont Energy Investment Corporation, VEIC, performed the evaluation of the program. Three Lion electric buses were operated by the school districts of Amherst, Concord, and Cambridge from the Fall of 2016 to early 2018

  

The capital cost at each site was $327,500 for the bus, plus about $25,000 for single-direction, Level 2 charger.

 

There are other balance-of-plant costs for a complete electric bus system, but they were ignored. For example, the capital cost of parking facilities with chargers for an electric bus system is much greater than diesel bus system

https://thelionelectric.com/en/products/electric

 

Cold Climate Penalty

 

The MA buses, with a cold climate, required 1.890/1.745 = 8.3% more electricity from the wall outlet to have 1.390/1.325 = 4.3% more electricity in the battery than the SSI buses, with a mild climate, to travel the same distance.

 

Table 4 shows:

1) The draw of kWh AC/mile, from wall meter

2) The resulting “in battery” kWh DC/mile

3) The charging ratio for an EV car and 3 electric school buses

 

The MA column is included to compare the SSI system with an MA system, if the MA had been efficiently operated


The MA Pilot Program was poorly executed, due to uncontrolled/haphazard charging, which greatly increased electricity consumption, plus there were numerous equipment issues.

It would have been wiser to have had all three buses at one location, instead of one bus at each of three locations.

 

Table 4/Losses

Vermont

SSI 

MA

Pilot Program

"Optimum"

Car

School bus

School Bus

School Bus

School Bus

Climate

Cold

Mild

Cold

Cold

Cold

Parking location

Indoor

Outdoor

Outdoor

Outdoor

Outdoor

Wall meter, kWh AC/mile (1)

0.350

1.745

1.890

2.380

1.470

AC to DC, etc., factor

1.060

1.060

1.060

1.060

1.060

To battery kWh DC/mile

0.330

1.646

1.783

2.245

1.387

Battery resistance factor

1.080

1.080

1.080

1.080

1.080

Loss-while-charging factor

1.025

1.150

1.188

1.496

1.496

In battery, kWh DC/mile (2)

0.298

1.325

1.390

1.390

1.390

Battery resistance factor

1.080

1.080

1.080

1.080

1.080

Available, kWh DC/mile

0.276

1.227

1.287

1.287

1.287

Misc. losses, % of (2)

5.000

5.000

5.000

5.000

5.000

Misc. losses, kWh DC/mile

0.014

0.061

0.064

0.064

0.064

To wheels, kWh DC/mile

0.262

1.166

1.222

1.222

1.223

Charging ratio (1)/(2)

1.173

1.317

1.360

1.713

1.058

VEIC EVALUATION OF THE MA-PILOT PROGRAM

 

Pilot Program travel 4,634 miles/bus; uncontrolled charging loss 71.3%; with demand charges

See page 4 and 45 of URL

https://www.mass.gov/files/documents/2018/04/30/Mass%20DOER%20EV%20...

 

Pilot Program measured consumption, at wall outlet, was 2.38 kWh AC/mile

This includes charging and miscellaneous losses while charging, and all other losses.

The charging factor was about 1.713, because of haphazard/uncontrolled charging. See table 4

Various electric systems are “always-on”, i.e., during charging, driving, or parking.

 

Amortizing Capital Cost: VEIC ignored amortizing costs, which should have been included.

The amortizing cost of an electric bus system would be at least 3.5 times a diesel bus system, on a system-to-system basis. 

The 3.5 ratio is for only the buses. It excludes various capital costs for a complete electric bus system

 
Both systems would need to have the same levels of service for comparison purposes, such as 12,000 miles/y. 

This may not be the case for electric buses, if there were a need for long road trips.

Operating Parameters: Pilot program bus range is about 75 miles, per Lion. VEIC determined the range averaged from 60 miles at 15F, to 90 miles at 75F, in Massachusetts, where it is not as cold as Vermont. See Notes.

 

- On-board, fuel oil-fired cabin heater, with fuel tank, to ensure cabin temperatures are maintained.

- Cabin heating was assumed at an average of 78 miles of bus travel per gallon, per VEIC

- Diesel bus mileage was assumed at 6.3 mpg, per VEIC

- Diesel price was assumed at $2.00/gal, per VEIC

- Electricity price was assumed at 13 c/kWh, per VEIC

- Battery capacity is 104 kWh DC, per Lion.

- Charging time is 6 - 8 hours, per Lion

- Electricity drawn from the battery is 1.3 - 1.4 kWh DC per mile while driving, per Lion

VEIC “ON-PAPER” SIMULATION TO REDUCE ELECTRIC BUS ENERGY COSTS

 

This section shows all references to the VEIC “on-paper” simulation, including figure 18, should be deleted from the VEIC report, because the simulation led to at least 2 physical impossibilities!!

 

1) VEIC assumption of 1.47 kWh AC/mile, with a cold climate, is physically impossible

2) VEIC assumption of NO DEMAND charges is physically impossible

 

Quote from VEIC report: Using a bus operating efficiency of 1.47 kWh/mile, the schools’ electric rates, hours of bus use, and mileage, VEIC was able to estimate the cost savings available if charging were to be managed to a minimum number of hours, outside of peak demand times (i.e., no demand charges). Bus total energy costs would have been $0.22 / mile and efficiency 1.47 kWh / mile, much closer to Lion bus purported operating efficiency of 1.3 - 1.4 kWh/mile. See Note

 

NOTE:

1) The VEIC statement “1.47 kWh / mile, much closer to Lion bus purported operating efficiency of 1.3 - 1.4 kWh/mile” is in error; it mixes AC with DC.

The 1.47 kWh/mile should have been stated as 1.47 kWh AC/mile.

VEIC uses 1.47 kWh AC/mile to calculate its “On-Paper” 22 c/mile. See below calculation.

 

2) Lion brochures state bus consumption as 1.3 - 1.4 kWh DC/mile (energy from battery to travel a mile), for a range of climates and operating conditions.

The 1.3 is for mild climates, flat/smooth roads, as on SSI, British Columbia.

The 1.4 is for cold climates, hilly/rough roads, as in New England. See table 4

 

As calculated by VEIC:

 

MA Pilot Program

Electric bus electricity = $4,110, energy + $2,608, demand = $6,718

Total energy cost: ($6718/13902 mile = 48.3 c/mile) + 3.8 c/mile, cabin heating = 52.1 c/mile

 

Diesel bus fuel cost = 13902 miles/6.3 mpg x $2.00/gal = $4,413

Diesel bus fuel cost = $4413/13902 miles = 32 c/mile.

 

“On-Paper” Simulation; no demand charges

Electric bus electricity cost = 1.47 kWh AC/mile x 13902 x 0.13 c/kWh = $2,561/y

Total energy cost: ($2561/13902 mile = 18.4 c/mile) + 3.8 c/mile, cabin heating = 22.2 c/mile

See pages 35, 36, 37 of URL

 

Utilization of School Buses

School buses, diesel or electric, are parked most of the time during a school day, and during Xmas vacation, Spring break, summer, 2 or 3-day weekends, and holidays. 
All-together, they are used about 5 h/d x 180d / 8766 h/y = 10.3% of the year. 

 

VEIC claimed no charging is required in New England, with a cold climate, during:

 

1) Most of these idle hours, cold or not

2) No charging during all peak demand hours, cold or not.

 

The VEIC assumption of no demand charges is contrary to SSI real-world experience

 

Quote from SSI ReportBritish Columbia Hydro has filed an application with the BC Utilities Commission for a special rate for fleet charging. They are proposing to eliminate the demand charge for the Large General Service rate, which would reduce that cost of charging a school bus by as much as half depending on the power rating of the chargers used.

http://saltspringcommunityenergy.com/Electric_Schoolbus_Study/SD64_...

   

NOTE: Interrupting the protection of $100,000 batteries is not an option, with a mild climate or a cold climate.

See section “Charging Electric Buses During Cold Daytimes and Night-times”

See SSI report.

 

Charging of Electric Buses: The VEIC claim of 1.47 kWh AC/mile, from wall outlet, equivalent to about 1.390 kWh DC/mile, in the battery, would lead to a charging percent of 1.470/1.390 = 5.8%, which is physically impossible, because the charging percent would be only 5.8/17.3 = 33% of the real-world values of Teslas and other EVs!! See table 4 and Note

 

NOTE: The typical 17 to 18 charging percent of EV cars certainly would not apply to school buses, because: 

 

1) They have idle-time of about 90% of the hours of a year, and would be parked outdoors, 

2) They are required to provide high reliability of service on Monday morning, even after they have been parked on Saturday and Sunday, especially during cold days.

3) See EV charging percent of three real-world examples in Appendix

 

Summary of Charging Percentages; see table 4

- MA Pilot Program required about 2.38 kWh AC/mile; charging loss 71.3%

- Vermont; average winter temperature 22F; requires about 1.890 kWh AC/mile; charging loss 36.0%. See fig. 13 of mass.gov URL

- SSI, BC; average winter temperature 45F; required about 1.745 kWh AC/mile; charging loss 31.7%

- EV charging loss 17 to 18 percent. See real-world examples in Appendix

- MA Pilot Program, VEIC “optimized”, would require 1.47 kWh AC/mile; charging loss 5.8%; physically impossible, as proven by real-world data of the SSI, BC bus program.

https://www.mass.gov/files/documents/2018/04/30/Mass%20DOER%20EV%20school%20bus%20pilot%20final%20report_.pdf 

Parking Diesel and Electric Buses

 

Diesel school buses usually are randomly parked, on a paved or hard-pack lot, outdoors. The parking lot likely has a diesel pump

 

Electric buses would need a paved lot, with raised, curbed areas, with one charger for each bus.

The capital cost of such a parking lot would be significantly greater than of a diesel parking lot.

 

On colder days, buses would be continuously plugged in, to protect the batteries and keep them fully charged, to be reliably available for the next day.

 

The conversion to electric buses would significantly increase:

 

1) Capital costs for parking facilities

2) Electricity consumption and demand load on local distribution grids

Charging the Batteries of the Buses

 

An electric or diesel school bus would make a 30 - 40 mile run in the morning, and in the afternoon. 

The tank of a diesel bus would be filled once or twice per week. In each case, that would take only a few minutes.

 

The batteries of an electric bus could be filled during midday, because midday solar power would be available on sunny days.

Midday solar DUCK-curves would be reduced.

 

The batteries of an electric bus would need to be charged at night, after utility demand charges would not be in effect.

 

For midday or nighttime charging, each bus would need its own charger, because it takes 3 - 4 hours for a half charge, per Lion.

 

Additional Demands on New England Grid due to EVs and Heat Pumps

 

In the near future, in New England, there may be 2 million EVs charging for several hours, each drawing about 10 kW, plus there may be 50,000 buses and trucks, each drawing about 20 kW, for a total of 21,000 MW, if they were all charging at the same time.

The 21,000 MW may be reduced to, say 10,000 MW, by means of clever juggling of time slots.

 

On colder days, two million heat pumps, each drawing about 2.5 kW, a total draw of 5,000 MW, would be in addition; more clever juggling.

 

These additional demands, even with juggling, would significantly exceed the existing demands on the NE grid and electricity generating capacity. See Appendix.

 

If nuclear and gas power plants were closed down, per RE zealot wishes, where would the electricity come from, when:

 

1) Midday solar electricity is minimal, because it is cloudy, or the panels are covered with snow and ice?

2) Wind electricity is minimal many hours of almost each day of the year?

3) Periods of minimal wind and minimal sun, which occur at random in NE, last 5 to 7 days?

http://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/vermont-co2-reduction-o...

http://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/vermont-co2-reduction-o...

PART 3; ADDITIONAL ANALYSIS

 

Electric Bus Range

 

Lion states the buses have a new battery capacity of 104 kWh DC and a range of 75 miles, and that they use 1.3 - 1.4 kWh DC/mile

This does not include charging losses

 

Lion does not state how that range was determined.

 

- Was an empty bus tested at the factory?

- Was an empty bus driven on a flat, dry, paved road, at a steady speed, on a 70F-day, which would require minimal kWh DC/mile from the battery?

- Was the bus driven on a hilly road, with some snow and ice, while loading children, often with backpacks, in a start-stop manner, on a 15F-day, which would require maximal kWh/mile from the battery?

 

See URL, and next section, and Appendix for 4 real-world EV examples.

https://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/poor-economics-of-elec...

 

Battery Loss of Range, due to Aging

 

Each year, thousands of Tesla owners report their mileage and battery kWh to Tesla.

The range loss of Teslas is about 1%/y for 10 years, based on a fleet of vehicles and real-world driving conditions.

 

1) It takes more and more electricity from wall outlets to charge the EVs from 15% to 80%, as the battery system ages. 

 

2) It takes and more and more electricity to discharge the EVs from 80% to 15%, as the battery system ages, which leads to range loss. 

 

Items 1 and 2 lead to greater and greater kWh/mile, as the EVs age

 

EV and electric school buses travel about 12,000 miles/y.

They lose about 9% of range at 288,000 km, equivalent to 12,000 x 15y = 180,000 miles

 

Transit buses travel about 25,000 to 30,000 miles/y

Their range loss is at least 1.5%/y, because of more intensive use

 

Miscellaneous Losses of Electric School Bus

 

The losses drawn from the battery, as kWh DC, include:

 

1) Battery heating and cooling during charging, operation and standing; some EVs use heat pumps

2) Hot and cold weather operation, which has increased battery losses

3) Heated driver seat/mirrors/wipers

4) Audio/video/various lights/on-board electronics

5) Road conditions, such as dirt roads, snow and ice, hilly terrain

6) A load of students with backpacks

7) While parked in a garage or field

8) Driving habits of operators

 
NOTE; Real-world 
range of new electric vehicles is about 10 to 20% less than EPA combined, and up to 40% less on hilly, snow/ice-covered roads, during winter days, with 20F or less temperatures.

 

NOTE: Real-world consumption of EVs is greater than EPA combined, due to miscellaneous losses, which, on an annual average basis, vary from about 6% (ideal conditions) to about 10% (adverse conditions). See Appendix

 

Battery Service Useful Life

 

- Battery University recommends batteries be operated between 20% charge and 80% charge for long useful life, such as 15 years; that range happens to be the most efficient, in terms of kWh DC/mile. See green line in image.

https://batteryuniversity.com/learn/article/how_to_prolong_lithium_based_batteries

- The efficiency curve moves slightly upward from the average at higher temperatures, slightly downward at lower temperatures.

- Charging from 5% to 20%, and from 80% to 95%, is inefficient, i.e., more kWh/mile from the wall plug, as would discharging for these ranges.

- Discharging the batteries from 5% charge to 95% charge, aka “range driving”, would significantly reduce useful service life, as would charging from 5% to 95%.

- This means the Lion typical operating range, for long useful service life, would be significantly less than 75 miles under normal conditions, but even less during colder days in winter.

Low Utilization Rates and Operating Challenges  

 

Participating school districts encountered a number of mechanical and logistical challenges, i.e., this emerging technology requires further testing and refinement before widespread deployment can occur. 

 

The three buses logged a total of 13,902 miles, or 4,634 miles/bus. See Note

The three buses provided school transportation for about 382 days (including some summer school), or 127 days/bus

 

If the buses had been driven every school day (180 days), including summer school (say 40 days), each bus would be on the road 220 days.

 

However, each bus was on the road only 127 days, i.e., 127/220 = 42% of the days the electric buses were not used, largely due to a variety of breakdown issues, which often took a long time to correct, because Lion has no service infrastructure in the US. See VEIC report.

https://www.mass.gov/files/documents/2018/04/30/Mass%20DOER%20EV%20...

 

NOTE: Annual school bus travel in the US and Vermont is about 12,000 miles.

https://afdc.energy.gov/data/10310

 

Comment on table: During “recorded days” electric bus operating data were collected. This was not the case for 382 - 279 = 103 days of the pilot program, for various reasons. It would be interesting to know the reasons operating data were not collected for each day. 

 

Table 5/School

Total miles

Recorded days

Travel days

Miles/d

kWh/mile

Amherst

5302

 150

150

34

2.38

Cambridge

4425

39

142

31

2.38

Concord

4176

90

90

46

2.38

Total

13902

279

382

 

 

Days/bus

 

 

127

 

 

APPENDIX 1

 

NREL Equivalency Method; primary energy only 

 

NREL calculates an equivalency ratio, i.e., a gallon of diesel fuel in the tank is equivalent to 128,488 Btu/gal (LHV) / 3,414 Btu/kWh = 37.64 kWh DC in the battery.

 

This method is utter nonsense, because it equates thermal Btus with electrical Btus. First-year students in US engineering schools are told that is an absolute no-no. The US EPA, NREL, etc., are the only political entities in the world using this method.

https://afdc.energy.gov/files/u/publication/fuel_comparison_chart.pdf

 

The electric bus requires 2.36 kWh DC/mile from the battery.

NREL fuel economy of the electric bus is (37.64 kWh/gal) / (2.36 kWh DC/mile) = 15.93 miles/gal eq.

 

The NREL method shows, the electric bus is 15.93/5.3 = 3.0 times more energy efficient than the diesel bus, if the diesel bus achieves 5.3 miles per gallon

This ratio would look very impressive to various RE folks, politicians, lay people, etc.

However, it is not, if energy is included on an A-to-Z basis., as it should have been, based on Energy Systems 101

 

NREL Equivalency Method, all energy included

 

The energy fed to New England power plants is about 9,500 Btu to produce one kWh, or 3,414 Btu of electricity, a conversion efficiency of about 36%.

 

It requires about 10% x 9,500 = 950 Btu to extract, process and transport the energy to power plants.

Energy required to produce one kWh = 9500 + 950 = 10,450 Btu

 

It requires about 27% x 128,488 Btu/gal (LHV) = 34,692 Btu/gal to extract, process and transport a gallon of diesel fuel

 

The NREL adjusted equivalency ratio becomes (128488 + 34691) / (9500 + 950) = 15.62 kWh DC in the battery, which is much less than the utter nonsense value of 37.64 kWh DC

 

As a result, the fuel economy of the electric bus becomes 15.62/2.36 = 6.62 miles/gal eq, which is only 6.62/5.3 = 1.25 times more energy efficient than the diesel bus!

 

This realistic value would look much less impressive to various RE folks, politicians, lay people, etc.

APPENDIX 2

Charging Electric Vehicles During Freezing Conditions

 

A 3-layer tape (cathode, separator and anode) is wound on a core to make a battery cell.

An EV battery pack has several thousand cells. The cells are arranged in strings, i.e., in series, to achieve the desired voltage

The strings are arranged in parallel to achieve the desired amps.

Power, in Watts = Volts x Amps

 

EV Normal Operation at 32F and below: On cold/freezing days, EVs would use on-boardsystems to heat the battery, as needed, during daily operation

 

EV Parking at 32 F and below: When at home, it is best to keep EVs plugged in during periods at 32F and below, whether parked indoors or outdoors.

When parking at an airport, which may not have enough charging stations, it is best to fully charge EVs prior to parking, to enable the on-board systems to heat the battery during parking, as needed.

 

Charging at 32F and below: Li-ion batteries must never be charged when the batterytemperature is at 32F or below. Do not plug it in. Turn on “pre-conditioning”, to enable the battery heating/cooling system (which could be a heat pump) to very slowly heat up the battery to about 40F. After the battery is “up to temperature”, normal charging can be started, either at home, or at a fast-charging rate on the road.

 

If the battery does not have enough charge to heat itself at about 40F, it needs to be heated by an external heat source, such as an electric heater under the battery, or towed/driven to a warm garage. All this, while cumbersome, needs to be done to safeguard the expensive battery.

 

Pre-conditioning can be set to:

 

1) Preheat the cabin and/or seats

2) Defrost windshield wipers, windows, door handles and charge port, etc., in case of freezing rain conditions; newer Teslas have charge port heaters. See URL

3) Pre-heat the battery, before arriving at a fast charger.

https://getoptiwatt.com/news/tesla-extreme-weather-considerations-h...

 

Power Outage, while parked at 32F and below: During a power outage, partially charged batteries, connected to dead chargers, could use much of their remaining charge to keep the batteries at about 40F.

If the power is restored, and the EV is plugged in, charging must never begin, unless the battery temperature is 35 to 40F

See URLs.

 

During charging, Li-ions (pos.) are absorbed by the anode (pos.) at decreasing rates as the battery temperature decreases from 32F

Any excess Li-ions arriving at the anode will plate out on the anode and permanently reduce the absorption rate.

 

The plating is not smooth, like chrome plating; it is roughish and may have dendrites, which could penetrate the thin separator between the anode and cathode, and cause a short and a fire.

 

A similar condition exists, if charging from 0 to 20% and from 80 to 100%; the more often such charging, the greater the anode resistance to absorbing Li-ions, and the greater the likelihood of plating.

 

The plating condition is permanent, i.e., cannot be reversed.

 

Also, frequently charging from 0 to 20% and from 80 to 100%, increases the charging percentage, increases kWh/mile of travel, and reduces range.

 

https://wattsupwiththat.com/2021/06/12/electric-bus-inferno-in-hano...

https://electronics.stackexchange.com/questions/263036/why-charging...

https://batteryuniversity.com/learn/article/charging_at_high_and_lo...

 

NOTE:

- EV batteries have miscellaneous losses to provide electricity to on-board systems

- On cold/freezing days, an electric bus should be ready for service as soon as the driver enters the bus

- On cold/freezing days, the bus driver would need at least 70% charge, because travel would require more kWh per mile

 

NOTE:

If the battery temperature is less than 40F or more than 115F, it will use more kWh/mile of travel

The best efficiency, charging and discharging, is at battery temperatures of 60 to 80F.

Batteries have greater internal resistance at lower temperatures and at high temperatures.

Pro-bus folks often point to California regarding electric buses, but in New England, using electric buses to transport children would be a whole new ballgame, especially on colder days. See URLs

 

https://www.wired.com/story/electric-cars-cold-weather-tips/

https://www.greencarreports.com/news/1127610_keep-your-parked-elect...

 

EV Electricity Supply: Where would the electricity come from, to charge and protect from cold, expensive batteries during extended electricity outages/rolling blackouts, due to multi-day, hot and cold weather events, with minimal wind and solar, as occur in New England throughout the year?

Would charging electricity be supplied by emergency standby diesel-generators, or emergency standby batteries?

APPENDIX 3

 

Vermont Has Much Better Options Than Expensive Battery Systems

 

Buildings: A state-wide building code, which would require new buildings to be highly sealed, highly insulated so they could easily be energy-surplus buildings, or be entirely off-the -grid.

Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, etc., have had such codes for at least a decade.

 

In Vermont, about 1.5% of buildings are highly energy efficient, highly sealed and highly insulated.

Only those building could be economically heated with heat pumps, and displace 100% of heating fuel.

All other Vermont buildings would have lesser percentages of displaced heating fuel, as proven by the VT-DPS survey.

 

Vermont should be replacing run-of-the-mill, old houses, with up-to-date, energy-surplus, off-the-grid, new houses, at a rate of at least 5,000 houses per year. There would be 150,000 such houses by 2050. Vermont has 330,000 households

 

Dabbling at weatherizing, at $10,000 per house, is politically attractive, but a gross waste of money. The goal should be energy conservation and high efficiency. Their combined effect would reduce CO2 at the least cost.

 

Energy efficiency measures to reduce energy consumption, CO2, and energy costs, such as by:

 

1) Exchanging traditional light bulbs for LEDs

2) Insulating and sealing energy-hog housing and other buildings

3) Increasing the mileage of existing gasoline vehicles

 

Such measures would cost $50 to $200 per metric ton, much less than the $2,100/Mt of electric school buses.

https://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/electric-bus-systems-l...

 

Vehicles: Vermont needs a gas-guzzler code to impose a fee on low-mileage vehicles.

The more below 40-mpg, the greater would be the fee.

Vehicles with greater than 40-mpg, such as the 54-mpg Toyota Prius, would be exempt.

RE folks would have everyone drive unaffordable EVs, that would not reduce much CO2 compared with EFFICIENT gasoline vehicles.

 

On a lifetime, A-to-Z basis, with travel at 105,600 miles over 10 years, the CO2 emissions, based on the present New England grid CO2/kWh, would be:

 

NISSAN Leaf S Plus, EV, compact SUV, no AWD, would emit 25.967 Mt, 246 g/mile

TOYOTA Prius L Eco, 62 mpg, compact car, no AWD, would emit 26.490 Mt, 251 g/mile

SUBARU Outback, 30 mpg, medium SUV, with AWD, would emit 43.015 Mt, 407 g/mile

VT LDV mix, 22.7 mpg, many with AWD or 4WD, would emit 56.315 Mt, 533 g/mile

See table 6

 

The above shows,

 

A NISSAN Leaf, a compact vehicle, would have CO2 reduction of 30.3 Mt over 10 years (3 Mt/y), if compared with the VT LDV mix, which contains small and big vehicles.

 

A NISSAN Leaf would have CO2 reduction of 16.3 Mt over 10 years (1.63 Mt/y), if compared with my 30-mpg Subaru Outback, a vastly more useful vehicle

 

NOTE:

EAN estimated 4.5 Mt/y, based on an artificial 25 g CO2/kWh electricity, instead of using the 317 g/kWh of the NE rid, calculated by ISO-NE, based on fuel consumption of power plants connected to the NE grid.

EAN neglected: 1) the CO2 of MAKING the battery, etc., and 2) LIFETIME conditions

https://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/poor-economics-of-elec...

 

NOTE: These URLs show, EVs are driven an average of 7,000 miles/y, compared to 12,000 miles/y for the US LDV mix. The difference holds for: 1) all-electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles, 2) single- and multiple-vehicle households, and 3) inside and outside California. This means, as a fleet, EVs would reduce less than 50% of the CO2 envisioned by RE folks’ dream scenarios.

RE promoters of “GOING EV” are seriously deranged, if they keep spouting EVs have no CO2 emissions.

 

http://faculty.haas.berkeley.edu/ldavis/Davis%20AEL%202019.pdf

https://www.caranddriver.com/news/a35498794/ev-owners-low-mileage-s...

 

NOTE: Any analyses by EAN, or VT-DOT, or Concerned “Scientists” (anyone can join), etc., using 12,000, or even 15,000 miles per year, would be GROSSLY in error and DECEPTIVE.

 

HUGE investments to implement EVs (and heat pumps) would be required, including:

 

Tens of millions of chargers everywhere,
Additional generation with HEAVILY SUBSIDIZED, EXPENSIVE, VARIABLE, INTERMITTENT wind and solar,
Additional grid augmentation and expansion for connecting the new energy systems
Additional site-specific, grid-scale, utility-grade battery systems everywhere

Additional costs for demand/supply balancing, and dealing with midday solar output surges
Worldwide battery materials supply chains

Table 6/Vehicle

Energy

Drive

Type

Mileage

Mt/10y

g/mile

NISSAN Leaf S Plus

EV

no AWD

compact SUV

 

25.967

246

TOYOTA Prius L Eco

hybrid

no AWD

compact car

62.0

26.490

251

SUBARU Outback

gasoline

with AWD

medium SUV

30.0

43.015

407

VT Light Duty Vehicle mix

mix

many with AWD or 4WD

mix

22.7

56.315

533

 

APPENDIX 4

 

EVs are Money Losers Compared to Efficient Gasoline Vehicles and Hybrids

 

Increasing the use of high-mileage vehicles, such as hybrids, and getting gas-guzzlers off the road (which need not involve any government subsidies), would reduce CO2 at much less cost per vehicle, than would the government-subsidized replacement of light duty vehicles with EVs.

 

The table shows the total cost of owning and operating four vehicles.

The CO2 values are on a lifetime, A-to-Z basis.

 

The Nissan Kona EV, and Toyota Prius L eco hybrid, both without all-wheel-drive, AWD, are not as versatile as the Subaru Outback and the Tesla Model Y for New England conditions, especially in rural areas.

All four have similar cargo space.

 

Owning cost is the difference of (EV - gasoline vehicle) purchase cost, amortized at 3.5% for 10 years.

 

Table 7/EV vs Gasoline

Operating

Owning

Total cost

CO2

CO2

 

c/mile

c/mile

c/mile

Mt/y

g/mile

Kona, no AWD

 

 

 

2.529

239

Cost, on-the-road charging

8.39

12.3

20.69

 

 

Cost, at-home charging

5.98

12.3

18.28

 

 

Model Y, AWD

 

 

 

3.024

286

Cost, on-the-road charging

9.37

26.1

35.47

 

 

Cost, at-home charging

7.04

26.1

33.14

 

 

Subaru, Outback, AWD

 

 

 

4.302

407

Gasoline vehicle; 30 mpg

7.33

0

7.33

 

 

Prius L Eco, no AWD

 

 

 

 

 

Gasoline/electric; 56 mpg

0

0

3.93

 

251

 

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Comment by Willem Post on August 13, 2021 at 6:06am

BOB,

A river of money to achieve next to NOTHING regarding GLOBAL WARMING?

The only thing it will achieve is more feel-good ECO-egoism of Dem/Prog RE folks, yearning for lucrative RE careers, and more and more CENTRALIZED command/control of the Vermont economy.

They will want more and more money, because their goals are EPHEMERAL, ELUSIVE FATA MORGANAs, akin to tilting at windmills, while wishing water would flow uphill.

http://www.truenorthreports.com/roper-vermont-climate-council-wants...

The turnkey capital cost to implement the Vermont Comprehensive Energy Plan, CEP, would be in excess of $1.0 billion/y for at least 33 years (2017 - 2050), according to a 2015 Energy Action Network, EAN, annual report. If updated to 2021, the numbers would be about $1.25 billion/y for 29 years (2021 - 2050). See URLs.



http://eanvt.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/EAN-2015-Annual-Report-...
https://outside.vermont.gov/sov/webservices/Shared%20Documents/2016...
https://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/high-costs-of-wind-sol...

Spending on government energy programs, including Efficiency Vermont, has averaged about $210 million/y from 2000 to 2015, a total of at least $2.5 billion, but Vermont CO2 emissions increased from 9.64 million metric ton in 2000, to 9.54 MMt in 2015, a decrease of 1.0%.
See page 36 of URL
https://dec.vermont.gov/sites/dec/files/aqc/climate-change/document...

EVs

EAN, with help of VT-DPS, claimed, without providing any calculations, a CO2 reduction more than two times as great, i.e., 4.5 versus 2.180 Mt/y per EV; the reduction would be even less, if the A-to-Z CO2 and lifetime conditions had not been ignored



This excessive 4.5 Mt/y claim was made to deceive people, including legislators, and to hype the adoption of overly expensive, not-very-useful EVs.
See table 1 and 2 in URL
https://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/some-ne-state-governme...

HEAT PUMPS

EAN, with help of VT-DPS, claimed, without providing any calculations, 90,000 HPs would reduce CO2 by 0.370 million Mt/y, or 4.111 Mt/y per HP
See page 4 of URL
https://www.eanvt.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/EAN-report-2020-fi...

Heat pumps displaced only 35% of my space heating propane in my well-insulated/well-sealed house.
This is better than the AVERAGE displacement of 27.6% by HPs in AVERAGE Vermont houses, per VT-DPS study. See URL
https://publicservice.vermont.gov/sites/dps/files/documents/2017%20...

The CO2 reduction of my displaced propane was 300 gal x 12.7 lb CO2/gal = 1.728 Mt/y, and the CO2 of the additional electricity was 2332 x 317 g/kWh = 0.739 Mt/y, for a reduction of 0.989 Mt/y, based on the ISO-NE value of 317 g/kWh, using fuel consumption of all power plants connected to the NE grid.

Heat Pumps are Money Losers in my Vermont House (as they are in almost all people's houses)

I installed three Mitsubishi, 24,000 Btu/h HPs, Model MXZ-2C24NAHZ2, each with 2 heads; 2 in the living room, 1 in the kitchen, and 1 in each of 3 bedrooms. The HPs have DC variable-speed, motor-driven compressors and fans, which improves the efficiency of low-temperature operation. The HPs last about 15 years. Turnkey capital cost was $24,000

I do not operate my HPs at 10F or below, because HPs would become increasingly less efficient with decreasing temperatures.
The HP operating cost per hour would become greater than of my highly efficient propane furnace. See URL
http://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/vermont-co2-reduction-o...

The cost of displaced propane was 300 x $2.399/gal = $720/y
The cost of additional electricity for HPs was 2332 x 0.20 = $466/y
My energy cost savings due to the HPs were $253/y, on an investment of $24,000!!
If all my investments had been this great, I would be in a poorhouse, and on welfare.

Cost of CO2 Reduction was (2,059, amortizing - 253, energy cost saving + 200, parts and maintenance)/0.998 Mt/y, CO2 reduction, table 6 = $2028/Mt, which is similar to money-losing, very expensive, electric transit and school buses. See URL
https://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/electric-bus-systems-l...

Weatherizing Vermont's energy-hog houses at $10,000 each would NOT render these house suitable for HPs, BY A LONG SHOT, as was proven in MY housed and by the VT-DPS study

Only high-efficiency houses that are HIGHLY SEALED AND HIGHLY INSULATED are suitable for HPs.

All of the above has been well known to VT-DPS and EAN, because I have kept them, and thousands of others, informed over the years.

Comment by Willem Post on May 28, 2021 at 3:34pm

Ken,

RE folks talking about “improved” compared to 1990s are right.

I wrote this article to show how much the improvement has been.

Far greater improvement is needed for “prime time” performance regarding school buses and transit buses, and also regarding EVs, which presently are in the Model T or Model A stage.

The money spent on electric school buses essentially is wasted, i.e., throw away 

There are much less costly ways to reduce CO2. See article.

Comment by Kenneth Capron on February 15, 2021 at 11:55am

GPCOG/PACTS has extensive plans for electric buses in their "Transit Tomorrow" plan. Belinda Ray slid  in five corridors of BRT or Bus Rapid Transit. They run from the City out Rt302, Rt100/26, Rt1 N+S and Rt22.

Having been involved with the testing of electric buses in the 90's, the weren't very efficient. Despite being told that the should have lasted a half day on one set of batteries, we found ourselves have to replace the battery packs every 2.5 hours. Considering that the process to forklift one set out and the other set in was length, the recharge was almost 24 hours.

Now when I ask about the efficiency of electric buses, all I get is "things have improved since the 90's".

Hannah Pingree on the Maine expedited wind law

Hannah Pingree - Director of Maine's Office of Innovation and the Future

"Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine."

https://pinetreewatch.org/wind-power-bandwagon-hits-bumps-in-the-road-3/

 

Maine as Third World Country:

CMP Transmission Rate Skyrockets 19.6% Due to Wind Power

 

Click here to read how the Maine ratepayer has been sold down the river by the Angus King cabal.

Maine Center For Public Interest Reporting – Three Part Series: A CRITICAL LOOK AT MAINE’S WIND ACT

******** IF LINKS BELOW DON'T WORK, GOOGLE THEM*********

(excerpts) From Part 1 – On Maine’s Wind Law “Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine if the law’s goals were met." . – Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting, August 2010 https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-power-bandwagon-hits-bumps-in-the-road-3/From Part 2 – On Wind and Oil Yet using wind energy doesn’t lower dependence on imported foreign oil. That’s because the majority of imported oil in Maine is used for heating and transportation. And switching our dependence from foreign oil to Maine-produced electricity isn’t likely to happen very soon, says Bartlett. “Right now, people can’t switch to electric cars and heating – if they did, we’d be in trouble.” So was one of the fundamental premises of the task force false, or at least misleading?" https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-swept-task-force-set-the-rules/From Part 3 – On Wind-Required New Transmission Lines Finally, the building of enormous, high-voltage transmission lines that the regional electricity system operator says are required to move substantial amounts of wind power to markets south of Maine was never even discussed by the task force – an omission that Mills said will come to haunt the state.“If you try to put 2,500 or 3,000 megawatts in northern or eastern Maine – oh, my god, try to build the transmission!” said Mills. “It’s not just the towers, it’s the lines – that’s when I begin to think that the goal is a little farfetched.” https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/flaws-in-bill-like-skating-with-dull-skates/

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 -- Mahatma Gandhi

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