“You cannot drill for electricity.”
That is the short answer to the question below:
Big oil companies are thrilled about the demand for electric products, including the demand for electric vehicles. The fact remains, you cannot drill for electricity…you have to produce it, using fossil fuels. Electricity is a secondary power source and the only plentiful, reliable, and cheap producer of electricity is Hydro, Nuclear, and Natural Gas. And of these three, only natural gas turbines can be powered on and off to meet consumer demand on the electrical grid. It takes hours and sometimes days to power up or power down a nuclear plant or a hydro plant, these are not “on demand” power generators. Natural gas is the most economical and practical producer of on demand electric power.
But first, lets take a look at the power grid in the US
The energy grid in the US is primarily fuel by nuclear & hydro power plants. Layered above these are natural gas turbines which can be powered up “on demand” fairly easily to meet consumer demands which are highest in the PM and in the AM when people are home or getting ready to leave for work.
Solar and Wind power is worked into the grid but in low amounts as they are sporadic and unpredictable and they threaten to inject too much (or not enough) electricity into the power grid. Keep in mind that there are not “batteries” storing electricity. When electricity is generated it is fed straight into the power grid.
As demand for electricity increases, so does the demand for fossil fuels. See sketch below:
So at the heart of the answer is this reality: It is not entirely true that replacing gas vehicles with electric vehicles reduces our demand or dependency on fossil fuels. You cannot drill for electricity.
Electricity is “secondary” energy source powered, in large part, by fossil fuels.
As battery technology improves and energy STORAGE technology is improved, then solar and wind energy could displace our need for fossil fuels. But that technology is a long way away. Tesla’s Powerwall is a solid step in the right direction.
Fossil fuels, at the moment, are too cheap and too plentiful to be replaced by any other technology.