Nickel hydride and lithium ion batteries are currently being installed into our hybrid vehicles instead of the traditional lead acid batteries. These names seem vastly different and scientific, but what do they really mean as far as sustainability and health concerns as far as exposures and disposal. Both battery types contain levels of precious metals that can poison humans and the soil they often get buried into during the landfill process. Hybrid batteries are usually 4 times the size of a standard car battery but can last much longer, in the article below they suggest around 100,000 miles. Hybrid batteries however cannot be revamped like the cores of lead acid batteries at the ends of their life spans.
(Typical Car Battery)
(Hybrid Car Battery)
So the question then looks to well environmentally speaking, aside from the battery component hybrids are more eco-friendly? Well Laura Williams, author of "Negative Environmental Impacts of Hybrid Vehicles" reveals one of the major components of recharging stations. You may think driving an electric vehicle is clean energy, but when recharging a vehicle in one of the cities charging stations, it is key to know where the city gets their energy from. After all if they are using fossil fuels to generate city electricity that is what is charging your car battery. Laura Williams also states "A 2004 report by the Connecticut General Assembly, stated that when comparing a traditional compact car to its hybrid counterpart, you can expect emissions to be reduced by approximately 10 percent. Greater reductions can be seen in hybrid SUVs, but the total effect of emissions reductions are between 10 and 15 percent."