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The Electric Car Facade.

Discussion in 'Political Discussion' started by IcyPatriot, Jul 9, 2009.

  1. IcyPatriot

    IcyPatriot ------------- PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #87 Jersey

    We need more of these articles and more media attention to this. Electric cars have made no sense to me at all. I've been saying for a while now that we haven't the infrastructure for more electricity and many of the plants burn coal. Then again ... more electric cars after cap and trade could reap a fortune for the carbon traders.

    Investors.com - Not So Fast With Those Electric Cars

    We'll need a study of gas emissions (gasoline) vs gas emissions (electric) ... per mile no less. Not really a winning formula if gasoline comes out on top as it's running out. If electric wins well cap and trade is ready for our wallets on that one.

    As an added discussion item here ... well probably useless since Malia Obama was wearing an anti nuke plant t-shirt ... we need more nuke plants and we need more $$$, stimulus money even towards the study of hydrogen cells for cars.
  2. PatsFanInVa

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    That's basically an argument for more and faster conversion to renewables to generate electricity.

    If your carbon footprint is greater because you're burning coal to produce electricity to run a car, the question becomes "huh. How do we get go-juice that doesn't emit greenhouse gases?"

    The answer is that electric energy storage solves your portable energy problem.

    Now, if you can only imagine the present as our solution to the origination of energy, you're still SOL, rather than solar, or hydroelectric or wind.. or whatever.

    Now let's retrain some autoworker guys to build some windfarms for Christ's sake.
  3. efin98

    efin98 Rookie

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    Nice article...

    They didn't mention the already overused and extremely fragile electric grid that would have to be upgraded and the need for charging stations nationwide and beyond as well as the need for more land to build the towers that will carry the electric supply lines across the wide open spaces and the need for land for new fueling stations at intermediate points out in the middle of nowhere...
  4. PatsFanInVa

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    From your link:

    It also says half our energy is generated from coal - the other half, I take it, is not.

    So right there, it's quoting one opinion in a report which states that if an electric car is dependent on coal - i.e., if we double the impact of coal, by assuming a 50% case -- you save 5% in CO2. So up to 10% savings, mile for mile.

    Uh, that's 10% better than 0%.

    But again, the report itself stresses that we need the renewable power sources to reap the benefits of electric vehicles.

    That is a very different statement from "nah bad idea, you won't save anything." It's more like "Dudes don't get complacent. The cars themselves are a fraction of the solution."

    There's work to do.

    Point taken, Icy. It's good to study the outcomes. However this particular outcome is simply a smaller win even in the most pessimistic scenario, and the huge win we need ONLY if we commit to renewable sources.

    It's time.

    PFnV
  5. IcyPatriot

    IcyPatriot ------------- PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #87 Jersey


    Saw an article on windfarms ... they take up huge space for what they produce. They are good for remote locations, coastal locations and that's about it. They need an average wind speed of @12-15 mph.

    Uncle Teddy says no to them.
  6. efin98

    efin98 Rookie

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    Gas powered plants, hydro-electric dams, nuclear reactors, wind and solar farms make up the other percentages.
  7. IcyPatriot

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    #87 Jersey


    If the Obama administration made it a point in the stimulus to increase our infrastructure and help fund new sources for electricity I'd be more optimistic. They didn't ... so is the assumption that the private sector will invest in these because of cap and trade? Perhaps ... that may work. But I read in a few places that investment in energy plants takes a long time to reap benefits ... many hammered investors will want investiments with quicker returns. Oh ... they'll hold some LT investments in their basket but if Obama wants real energy change he might be better off funding more of it ... for now anyways.
  8. IcyPatriot

    IcyPatriot ------------- PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #87 Jersey

    we are sitting on tons and tons of gas ... mostly due to new technology that breaks apart mantle and goes and grabs the gas ... we used to drill sideways ... very expensive. But where is the natural gas talk? I don't see much of it in the media and I'm not in depth on the topic to understand why. If Obama does not want nuke plants then why not at least 10-20% more natural gas plants? The plants could be converted from coal to gas I am sure.
  9. efin98

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    They are being converted to gas, but it's still taking time and money to get done and then after they do convert they have a huge amount of land they need to clean up costing even more slowing the conversions down.

    Add in that gas is still a fossil fuel, so the carbon being released is smaller but not "clean" so it's not mentioned for that specific reason: it's still burning CO2 into the air...
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2009
  10. PatsFanInVa

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    You make an excellent case for more spending... :D

    This is actually why I get annoyed with the "Oh my Gawd look what he's spending!" crowd. We're like a guy with a house with a leaky roof, a rotting porch, termites, and a poltergeist... and we've left it all to go to hell for 30+ years, because we wanted a new sports car, a jet-ski, and a stripper girlfriend that demands lavish gifts to keep her home fires burning. Oh yeah and we just lost our job.

    Then we get in a guy that says "Wellllll... I can fix this roof, and these steps, and get rid of the termites, but it's gonna cost you." And we scream bloody murder, out of a newfound sense of fiscal responsibility.

    To your point on cap-and-trade: That's exactly what it's supposed to do. It's using a market mechanism to make cleaner energy more appealing and high-carbon-footprint energy less appealing.

    Investors might WANT instant returns, but their decisions on energy will have to be decided on the merits of how appealing the energy they're investing in will be.

    So: you can get a few grand back on your hybrid or plug-in electric. That's nice, whoop de do. Big deal. They're still rather exotic, economies of scale haven't even ramped up. They're expensive. I don't want em.

    When do I want em? The industry HAS the answer to that. When gas costs 3-4 bucks a gallon.

    So do we want high gas prices? Yes and no... we all have our old internal combustion clunkers around. But without high gas prices, we'll just have these expensive alternatives built at low volumes.

    My understanding is we're incentivizing the electrics, but ultimately only mass production and mass sales will get you the economies of scale you need to really compete.

    The oil companies want the profits and will have no problem getting what they can, now, for their product. I don't think they actually have the evil discipline to "dump" on the market anymore in their own long-term interests. Me personally, I'd have a high gas tax to GET from point A to point B... but we will get there naturally soon enough.

    Similarly, with expensive electricity coming from coal, am I going to build another coal plant, or make the higher capital investment in a wind farm? Yes you need acreage. Ever been to the midwest or the west? Acreage we have. Famously, Kennedy didn't want his view screwed up. I don't care. We can do this offshore as well. We know how to do it, we need the economic mechanism to get there.

    So anyway... wait-and-see mode on cap-and-trade. I certainly DO hope it does what it's meant to do. I hope that a smart-grid where you can sell back your excess juice will make power a cottage industry as well.

    But this is the most action we've seen since the Carter days... what it took to get here bothers me. But it's nice to finally be getting serious about it.
  11. IcyPatriot

    IcyPatriot ------------- PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #87 Jersey


    Phew ... you are on tonight ... good post.;)

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