Soaring SUV sales make it harder to hit climate goals

An assembly line of Huawei Seres Aito M7 electric SUVs on February 3rd, 2023, in Chongqing, China. | Photo by VCG/VCG via Getty Images

SUV sales soared in 2022, a trend that makes it much harder to reach global climate goals, experts say. And while car buyers flocked to electric SUVs along with their gas-guzzling counterparts, supersize EVs pose their own environmental challenges.

When it comes to slashing pollution from passenger vehicles, bigger is the opposite of better. SUVs burn through about 20 percent more oil on average than medium-size cars. Electric SUVs also require larger batteries than other EVs, and experts are already warning that we won’t have enough raw materials to meet skyrocketing demand for lithium-ion batteries.

Bigger is the opposite of better

Nevertheless, SUVs outcompeted their smaller counterparts in 2022. While car sales overall slumped last…

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