Joe the coal miner gets $150 more, Ahmed the terrorist gets $140 less.

Dirty Coal Fuels my car. And I’m proud of it!

A common criticism of Electric Vehicles is that most of the electric is generated by coal. Some see this as a big negative, however I welcome this statistic and here’s why.

I’ve driven 10,713 miles since getting my LEAF. I analyzed where my electric dollars go to versus where they would have gone had I retained my previous vehicle, a Chevy Malibu.

Click image to download spreadsheet

Most of the electric is Tennessee is generated by coal (53%), only 16% of 58% would have gone to the Middle East as a gasoline purchase had I retained my Malibu. However because I would have spent at least 5 times as much on gasoline the monies going to coal producers instead of an unfriendly nation are surprisingly similar.

Controlled explosion of IED, US Army in Iraq

Not only am I saving thousands per year in fuel costs personally, my dollars go to Joe the coal miner and about the same amount isn’t going to Ahmed the terrorist.

Looking beyond my personal situation, let’s translate what that means to the nation if we switch to electric transportation.

  • A better economy, more of our dollars stay inside the US instead of going abroad.
  • A more secure nation, we no longer depend upon foreign nations to simply get around.

Let’s forget about ‘Drill Baby Drill’ and start shouting ‘Mine Baby Mine’ or ‘Frack Baby Frack’.

Later in 2012 the LEAF will be manufactured in Tennessee. Why wouldn’t you get one 🙂

Sources for basis of calculations can be found at

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