Electric Vehicles are touted as a key component to solving our climate crisis. Many consumers are jumping on the EV bandwagon, and companies like Amazon are building a fleet to ship goods by electric truck. Likewise, national environmental organizations are pushing EVs as key to lowering GHG emissions and transitioning to a green economy.
But are EVs a real climate solution? They can be, but ONLY if they coincide with mode shift from roads to rail, mass transit and passenger rail development, redesign of communities, battery recycling technology, and mitigation of lithium mining impacts.
Anything short of these co-occurring developments is contrary to the Green New Deal vision.
We need to ask:
- How do we avoid trading one extractive model with another?
- How do we center community self-determination and localization, instead of furthering the worst aspects of globalization?
- How do we invest in public works in a way that is just, reduces harms, and addresses historic harms?
Solutionary Rail seeks to harmonize our transportation system, and we work with people like Robert to protect our natural areas, design cities that meet people’s real needs, all while reducing GHG emissions. Real solutions – like modeshifting long haul freight, building mass transit and passenger rail – would have an immediate impact on pollution and emissions and would contribute toward racial, environmental and transportation justice.
EVs can be a part of the solution – but these other areas warrant a much bigger investment and more attention. This Solutionary Rail presentation challenges the panacea of Electric Vehicles.
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