Alex Epstein of the Center for Industrial Progress has a great piece at Forbes.com titled With the Tesla Model S, Elon Musk Has Created a Great Fossil Fuel Car. Here is an excerpt:
"It is commonplace to contrast gas-powered cars with 'electric cars,” but the electricity in an 'electric car”'must come from somewhere–and that somewhere is usually : coal, oil, and natural gas, which produce a combined 67% of electricity around the globe, because they are so cheap, plentiful, and reliable. And the role of fossil fuels is increasing, not decreasing; in the developing world, 80% of new power plants use low-cost coal. . . .
"If Teslas take over the world, they will do so as mostly coal cars–or natural gas cars. And not just because of the energy it takes to run them, but because of the massive amount of energy it takes to manufacture them. The Tesla’s state-of-the-art materials, particularly that $30,000 battery, take a massive amount of energy to build–and that energy comes from fossil fuels, particularly coal. In fact, some studies argue that the Tesla battery takes so much fossil fuel energy to make that the car over its lifetime emits CO2 than a gasoline-powered car.
We Are Doomed Without, Not Because of, Fossil Fuel Use
The Tesla Debate @ the Center for Industrial Progress