Electric vehicles may not have the stamina to outsell gasoline engines. Photo: Paul Aiken/Digital First Media/Boulder Daily Camera via Getty Images

The Energy Information Administration's latest set of long-term projections is kind of a sad trombone when it comes to the growth of electric vehicles in the U.S.

Where it stands: The "reference case" in the EIA's Annual Energy Outlook 2019 projects that EVs will grow but internal combustion engines will remain "dominant" through at least mid-century.

  • They see gasoline-powered and to a much lesser extent "flex fuel" (gasoline-high ethanol) vehicles accounting for 75% of the light-duty sales in 2050.

The other side: Contrast their outlook with the consultancy BloombergNEF.

  • They see battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrids swelling to 64% of the U.S. market in 2040, with BEV sales around 10.3 million, which is several times what EIA projects, their analysts told me.
  • Yes, BNEF has long been the optimistic end of the spectrum, but a number of major forecasters have been boosting their estimates, too.

Where it stands: The EIA has long faced criticism for low-balling the growth of renewables, and there's reason to think they're too conservative when it comes to EVs too.

  • Consider Rice University analyst Daniel Cohan, who questions the EIA's cost comparisons for gasoline-powered versus electric-powered vehicles.

But, but, but: To be fair, it's an exercise and the EIA takes some pains to show that there are all kinds of variables and the future, like, hasn't even happened yet.

  • The reference case, for instance, assumes that laws and policies remain unchanged, and needless to say U.S. policy isn't static.

Go deeper: Harvard energy expert Jesse Jenkins discussed the topic via this Twitter thread over the weekend.

  • It's a helpful look at the uses and limitations of long-term models and his view that the EIA's methods don't adequately consider technology and economic changes.

Go deeper

Updated 34 mins ago - Science

Hurricane Isaias makes landfall in North Carolina

People walk through floodwaters on Ocean Blvd. in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, on Monday. Photo: Sean Rayford/Getty Images

Hurricane Isaias made landfall as a Category 1 storm near Ocean Isle Beach in southern North Carolina at 11:10 p.m. ET Monday, packing maximum sustained winds of 85 mph, per the National Hurricane Center (NHC).

What's happening: Hurricane conditions were spreading onto the coast of eastern South Carolina and southeastern N.C., the NHC said in an 11 p.m. update. Ocean Isle Beach Mayor Debbie Smith told WECT News the eye of the storm triggered "a series of fires at homes" and "a lot of flooding." Fire authorities confirmed they were responding to "multiple structure fires in the area."

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 12:30 a.m. ET: 18,224,253 — Total deaths: 692,679 — Total recoveries — 10,865,548Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 12:30 a.m. ET: 4,713,500 — Total deaths: 155,401 — Total recoveries: 1,513,446 — Total tests: 57,543,852Map.
  3. Politics: White House will require staff to undergo randomized coronavirus testing — Pelosi says Birx "enabled" Trump on misinformation.
  4. Sports: 13 members of St. Louis Cardinals test positive, prompting MLB to cancel Tigers series — Former FDA chief says MLB outbreaks should be warning sign for schools.
  5. 1 🎥 thing: "Tenet" may be the first major film to get a global pandemic release.

Exclusive: Trump declines to praise John Lewis, citing inauguration snub

President Trump dismissed the legacy of the late Rep. John Lewis in an interview with “Axios on HBO,” saying only that Lewis made a “big mistake” by not coming to his inauguration.

The big picture: Trump's comments were a glaring contrast with the praise Republicans and Democrats showered upon Lewis this week, and a default to personal grudges during a week of mourning for a civil rights hero.