It's one thing for the Big 3 to get tires and engine parts from cities along the US Rust Belt. It's another thing altogether, though, for Tesla Motors to source far more esoteric materials like graphite, cobalt and lithium from Canada and the northern US. But that's what the California-based company has in mind, and it's all in the name of environmental friendliness and cost, Bloomberg News says.
One of the bigger knocks against hybrid and electric vehicles is that while they don't directly produce much in the way of harmful emissions (if they make any at all), the process of building their electric motors and batteries can be very, very bad for the environment. Take graphite, for example. It's an essential ingredient in lithium-ion battery packs, like the one shown above in the back of a Toyota Prius Plug-In. According to Bloomberg, the average hybrid car uses about 22 pounds of graphit