Bob Spencer

Why are the Democrats trying to ban gasoline-powered cars? Americans are paying higher fuel prices because the Democrats like Gavin Newsome, Joe Biden and Chuck Schummer have made it more difficult for oil companies to invest in exploration for more fuel sources. As if higher fuel prices are not enough, these same Democrats are now trying to make the United States more dependent on China by forcing Americans to buy electric vehicles (EVs). 

The standard battery for EVs are lithium based batteries. These EV batteries need five key minerals: graphite, cobalt, lithium, nickel and manganese. Who dominates the supply chain for these minerals? China. 

Graphite represents the largest volume of all the raw materials used for EV batteries. The production of graphite is dominated by China which produces 50% of the world’s synthetic graphite and about 70% of flaked graphite. 

Cobalt is required in EVs for battery cathodes. The current world production of cobalt needs to increase 20 times to meet future demands for EV production. The Democratic Republic of Congo supplies about 70% of the world’s cobalt production. The working conditions of a huge percentage of the workforce for cobalt production are abysmal and would not be tolerated in the respectable countries of the world. China either owns or provides financing for 80% of the Congo’s industrial cobalt mines. 

Lithium is another necessary mineral for the production of EV batteries. More than 80% of the world’s raw lithium is mined in Australia, Chile and China. China controls more than 50% of the world’s lithium processing and refining. China has 75% of the world’s lithium-ion battery mega-factories according to the International Energy Agency. 

Are you noticing a pattern here? So much of the world’s mineral supply for batteries needed in the EV field is under the control of the Chinese. If you read Chinese newspapers or listen to Chinese broadcasts you will soon understand that China is not a friend of the United States.

Juxtapose that with the oil that is needed for gasoline-powered vehicles. The United States has a dominant supply of oil that is used in gas-powered vehicles. Would it not seem prudent to slowly increase the percentage of electric vehicles so we allow time for the production of the needed minerals in our own country or countries that are friendly to the US. Banning gasoline-powered vehicles, as Democrats have suggested, would play into the hands of our enemy; China. 

We are watching Russia use its control of natural gas resources to bring Europe to its knees. The bureaucrats who run Germany laughed when they were warned that buying Russian gas would end up hurting their economy. The citizens of Germany will be paying exorbitant rates for natural gas and some will go without heat this winter. 

Our Democratic Party is attempting to follow the same playbook and put the US economy in the hands of China. The Democrats hate the oil industry so much they are willing to force Americans to become dependent on China for electric vehicles. 

Why are we rushing to electric vehicles? Bjorn Lomborg, a visiting fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institute recently wrote that a recent study found that electric vehicles put out more of the most dangerous particulate air pollution than gasoline-powered cars in 70% of US states. 

Does the public realize that, on average, each additional electric vehicle in the US causes additional air-pollution damage worth $1,100 over its lifetime? It is significantly more costly per mile to drive an electric vehicle versus a gasoline-powered vehicle. Most electric vehicle owners use them as a second car because they don’t trust the EVs if they have to travel any distance. Most Americans cannot afford the luxury of an electric vehicle. This is despite the enormous government subsidies given to the makers of electric vehicles. You as a taxpayer are paying for the electric vehicles the wealthy people drive.

The Democratic Party is determined to force a quick switch to electric vehicles. This will play right into China’s hand because of their control of the minerals needed to build the batteries for electric vehicles. Once we become dependent on electric vehicles, China could withhold the minerals necessary to produce the batteries for the vehicles. 

We need our political leaders to say NO to the Democratic politicians who are trying to force the gasoline powered vehicles out of existence.

Bob Spencer
Manatee Herald

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