[extropy-chat] Debate on Peak Oil

Alfio Puglisi puglisi at arcetri.astro.it
Tue May 3 20:57:03 UTC 2005

On Tue, 3 May 2005, BillK wrote:

>On 4/29/05, "Hal Finney" <hal at finney.org> wrote:>
>> Now you want to sell that SUV and replace it with a hybrid getting
>> 30 mpg and selling for $25000.  You'll save $2500/year in gas costs.
>So the current UK gas price is about 0.86 x 3.785 x 1.89 = 6.152 USD per gallon.
>$5/gallon is cheap! Send it over here!
>Most of the gas price in the UK is tax, of course. But this price
>level has made little difference to the public's love affair with the
>automobile. It doesn't seem to matter what it costs or how many are
>killed on the roads, we must have our cars.

Actually there is an effect: Europeans tend to drive much more efficient
cars and drive less miles. Something that was immediately evident in Hal's
post was that a 30 mpg car is seen so efficient that it must be a hybrid (!)

Nowadays a 30 mpg car would be a "thirsty" one in any European nation,
except for very big and/or sport cars. Ordinary gasoline cars are about 40
mpg, new diesels are a bit better (as long as you don't run the proverbial
circle around gasoline cars), cars tuned for low consumption easily get
50+ mpg. Also, a 20 km (12 miles) commute is seen as quite long.

I don't remember where, but I remember one study concluding that the
amount of money spent by USians and Europeans on gas wasn't that


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