The EV Impact on Oil Consumption
As the world moves towards the electrification of the transportation sector, demand for oil will be replaced by demand for electricity.
To highlight the EV impact on oil consumption, the above infographic shows how much oil has been and will be saved every day between 2015 and 2025 by various types of electric vehicles, according to BloombergNEF.
How Much Oil Do Electric Vehicles Save?
A standard combustion engine passenger vehicle in the U.S. uses about 10 barrels of oil equivalent (BOE) per year. A motorcycle uses 1, a Class 8 truck about 244, and a bus uses more than 276 BOEs per year.
When these vehicles become electrified, the oil their combustion engine counterparts would have used is no longer needed, displacing oil demand with electricity.
Since 2015, two and three-wheeled vehicles, such as mopeds, scooters, and motorcycles, have accounted for most of the oil saved from EVs on a global scale. With a wide adoption in Asia specifically, these vehicles displaced the demand for almost 675,000 barrels of oil per day in 2015. By 2021, this number had quickly grown to 1 million barrels per day.
Let’s take a look at the daily displacement of oil demand by EV segment.
|Number of barrels saved per day, 2015||Number of barrels saved per day, 2025P|
|Electric Passenger Vehicles||8,600||886,700|
|Electric Commercial Vehicles||0||145,000|
|Electric Two & Three-Wheelers||674,300||1,100,000|
|Total Oil Barrels Per Day||726,000||2,465,500|
Today, while work is being done in the commercial vehicle segment, very few large trucks on the road are electric—however, this is expected to change by 2025.
Meanwile, electric passenger vehicles have shown the biggest growth in adoption since 2015.
In 2022, the electric car market experienced exponential growth, with sales exceeding 10 million cars. The market is expected to continue its strong growth throughout 2023 and beyond, eventually coming to save a predicted 886,700 barrels of oil per day in 2025.
From Gas to Electric
While the world shifts from fossil fuels to electricity, BloombergNEF predicts that the decline in oil demand does not necessarily equate to a drop in oil prices.
In the event that investments in new supply capacity decrease more rapidly than demand, oil prices could still remain unstable and high.
The shift toward electrification, however, will likely have other implications.
While most of us associate electric vehicles with lower emissions, it’s good to consider that they are only as sustainable as the electricity used to charge them. The shift toward electrification, then, presents an incredible opportunity to meet the growing demand for electricity with clean energy sources, such as wind, solar and nuclear power.
The shift away from fossil fuels in road transport will also require expanded infrastructure. EV charging stations, expanded transmission capacity, and battery storage will likely all be key to supporting the wide-scale transition from gas to electricity.
Visualized: Inside a Lithium-Ion Battery
Lithium-ion batteries are critical for many modern technologies, from smartphones to smart cities. Here’s how this critical technology works.
What’s Inside a Lithium-Ion Battery?
Winning the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 2019, the lithium-ion battery has become ubiquitous and today powers nearly everything, from smartphones to electric vehicles.
In this graphic, we partnered with EnergyX to find out how these important pieces of technology work.
Lithium-ion batteries have different standards in various regions, namely NMC/NMCA in Europe and North America and LFP in China. The former has a higher energy density, while the latter has a lower cost.
Here is the average mineral composition of a lithium-ion battery, after taking account those two main cathode types:
|Material||% of Construction|
The percentage of lithium found in a battery is expressed as the percentage of lithium carbonate equivalent (LCE) the battery contains. On average, that is equal to 1g of lithium metal for every 5.17g of LCE.
How Do They Work?
Lithium-ion batteries work by collecting current and feeding it into the battery during charging. Normally, a graphite anode attracts lithium ions and holds them as a charge. But interestingly, recent research shows that battery energy density can nearly double when replacing graphite with a thin layer of pure lithium.
When discharging, the cathode attracts the stored lithium ions and funnels them to another current collector. The circuit can react as both the anode and cathode are prevented from touching and are suspended in a medium that allows the ions to flow easily.
Despite making up only 7% of a battery’s weight on average, lithium is so critical for manufacturing lithium-ion batteries that the U.S. Geological Survey has classified it as one of 35 minerals vital to the U.S. economy.
This means refining lithium more effectively is critical to meeting the demand for next-generation lithium-ion batteries.
EnergyX is powering the clean energy transition with the next generation of lithium metal batteries with longer cycle life, greater energy density, and faster charging times.
Ready to join the energy transition? Learn how with EnergyX.
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