286 Pounds of Coal Fuel a 1,000 Mile EV Road Trip


Bloomberg analyzed the mileage and efficiency of different fuels. They didn’t discuss cost, availability of parts, charging, and reliability. It should be noted that coal and natural gas are used to power EVs. But they are being eliminated quickly by the Progressives in power.

They compared gas, wind, solar, coal, and natural gas for a 1,000-mile trip.

New Yorkers looking to drive to Daytona Beach, Florida, would use about 40 gallons of gasoline to travel 1,000 miles in a Chevrolet Impala.

Coal Power Plant At River

Switch that gas guzzler out for an electron-eating EV, and the equation changes. A Tesla Model S traveling the same distance uses 33 kilowatt-hours of energy to travel 100 miles. That translates to burning about 286 pounds of coal. Modern coal plants only convert about 35 percent of the fuel’s energy into electricity. About 10 percent of that electricity could be lost as it travels along power lines.

Bloomberg says it’s better than gas. That much coal would release about 310 kilograms of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. That is compared with 350 kilograms of 40 gallons of gasoline.

Natural Gas

A natural gas power plant producing the same amount of electricity would need to burn about 2,500 cubic feet of the fuel. Gas plants are more efficient than coal, converting about half the fuel’s energy into electricity. It’s also much cleaner, emitting just 170 kilograms of carbon dioxide for the 1,000-mile journey.


When it comes to charging electric vehicles with solar power, size matters. A typical 10-kilowatt rooftop array would need about seven days to create enough electricity for a 1,000-mile journey-it only operates at about 20 percent of its capacity on average.

Scale up to a photovoltaic power station, though, and it would take minutes, not days.


Wind is similar, with different sizes of turbines producing different amounts of electricity. Take the Vestas V90-2.0 MW, an 80-meter tall behemoth that can be found swirling on the plains of West Texas, among other locations. Just one of these turbines and wind farms are usually planted with dozens of them, producing enough electricity in a day to power a 1,000-mile trip every 33 minutes.

[They’re killing whales, we hear. Also wind and solar are definitely not reliable.]

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