Martin Karo is apparently a Philadelphia based attorney who likes to dabble in incomplete, obtuse mathematics and partisan hatchet-jobs. I do not know Mr. Karo at all, but it is not hard to see how he blatantly distorts reality to sell a fiction that is as absurd as it is dangerous.
To be fair to Mr. Karo he is good at math, and he has found a way to use those skills to support a hopeless position. In a recent opinion piece, Mr. Karo uses his mathematics and total lack of connection with reality to try and show that a 7 series BMW is more efficient than a Tesla. 18% more efficient to be exact, and 18% kinder to the planet.
I am not going to delve into the math, as there is no need. Others have, and you are welcome to read through their well founded criticisms. Mr. Karo was flat wrong, and if intentional, his omissions were dishonest in the highest.
No, instead I am going to address something that is far more important, and that is the flawed foundations that people like Mr. Karo use to attack green development, and the people who embrace it.
In order to come to a conclusion that somehow makes petroleum more efficient than electricity, Mr. Karo left out the distribution life cycle for gasoline, though he did not forget to include it for a Tesla.
Not surprisingly, this would effect the outcome, and make the big BMW a lot less green than it appeared in the fantasy world that he created.
This was not the only oversight in the set-up that Mr. Karo crafted either, there were other “issues” like the fact that to him, the basis of this the problem was consumption. But as John Beltz Snyder points out, the issue is not consumption, but emissions.
This astute point engages one of the major arguments that is made against electric cars, and that is: they suck power from the grid.
In the United States it is fair to say that a Tesla isn’t so green, because the power generation in the USA is dirty, archaic and only getting worse (especially under Trump). What this means is; that if people want the world to be able to get greener, it isn’t going to happen with electric cars alone.
We need bigger changes.
Short sighted , incomplete and wrong assertions are a big part of what is holding us back.
We need to get past all of the personal stuff and see that we all need to address what are very real problems, and infighting is only going to make us waste what little time and energy we have.
So please Mr. Karo, if you read this I want you to know that I understand that you are not perfect, and perhaps you were trying to point out a problem that you thought was relevant.
But you were dead wrong, you mislead anyone who read your work, and you blatantly made personal attacks against people based on their choice of automobile.
Maybe you don’t see petroleum for the absolute menace that it is, and that is part of the problem. It may be why you just assumed that it shows up at the gas station magically.
I assure you that is does not, and have included a picture of an offshore drilling rig to show you one of the many places that crude oil comes from.
This one is on fire, and that happens sometimes. It is hard to make allowances for that in an equation like the one you designed, but as I am sure that you can see, an event like that will have environmental consequences.
Emissions are one of them, the loss of human life is another.
Now lets see what we can do to move forward, and make the changes that we need to make.