[Paleopsych] gasoline prices

Gerry Reinhart-Waller waluk at earthlink.net
Sun Aug 21 16:04:17 UTC 2005

So true.  Yet the cost for making electricity is still a good deal less 
than the current price for a gallon of gasoline.

Gerry Reinhart-Waller

Christian Rauh wrote:

> Note that burning coal to make electricity to move a car engine is 
> less energy efficient and more polluting than burning gas in that engine.
> Christian
> Gerry Reinhart-Waller wrote:
>> It is a good first step.  That I agree with.
>> Hybids are a wave of the future.  But there are many other waves that 
>> need to follow.
>> Gerry Reinhart-Waller
>> Steve Hovland wrote:
>>> These ideas can be applied on a wider scale.
>>> Here's a car we saw in Europe:
>>> This is the future in America :-)
>>> Steve Hovland
>>> www.stevehovland.net
>>> -----Original Message-----
>>> From:    Gerry Reinhart-Waller [SMTP:waluk at earthlink.net]
>>> Sent:    Monday, August 15, 2005 6:14 PM
>>> To:    The new improved paleopsych list
>>> Subject:    Re: [Paleopsych] 250 miles per gallon? They're doing it
>>> Well and good, Steve.  But one robin does not a springtime make.  
>>> Even if it is parked in your garage.
>>> Regards,
>>> Gerry Reinhart-Waller
>>> Steve Hovland wrote:
>>>> Tinkerers fiddle with hybrids to increase efficiency
>>>> Bottom of Form 1
>>>> CORTE MADERA, California (AP) -- Politicians and automakers say a 
>>>> car that can both reduce greenhouse gases and free America from its 
>>>> reliance on foreign oil is years or even decades away.
>>>> Ron Gremban says such a car is parked in his garage.
>>>> It looks like a typical Toyota Prius hybrid, but in the trunk sits 
>>>> an 80-miles-per-gallon secret -- a stack of 18 brick-sized 
>>>> batteries that boosts the car's high mileage with an extra 
>>>> electrical charge so it can burn even less fuel.
>>>> Gremban, an electrical engineer and committed environmentalist, 
>>>> spent several months and $3,000 tinkering with his car.
>>>> Like all hybrids, his Prius increases fuel efficiency by harnessing 
>>>> small amounts of electricity generated during braking and coasting. 
>>>> The extra batteries let him store extra power by plugging the car 
>>>> into a wall outlet at his home in this San Francisco suburb -- all 
>>>> for about a quarter.
>>>> He's part of a small but growing movement. "Plug-in" hybrids aren't 
>>>> yet cost-efficient, but some of the dozen known experimental models 
>>>> have gotten up to 250 mpg.
>>>> They have support not only from environmentalists but also from 
>>>> conservative foreign policy hawks who insist Americans fuel 
>>>> terrorism through their gas guzzling.
>>>> And while the technology has existed for three decades, automakers 
>>>> are beginning to take notice, too.
>>>> So far, DaimlerChrysler AG is the only company that has committed 
>>>> to building its own plug-in hybrids, quietly pledging to make up to 
>>>> 40 vans for U.S. companies. But Toyota Motor Corp. officials who 
>>>> initially frowned on people altering their cars now say they may be 
>>>> able to learn from them.
>>>> "They're like the hot rodders of yesterday who did everything to 
>>>> soup up their cars. It was all about horsepower and bling-bling, 
>>>> lots of chrome and accessories," said Cindy Knight, a Toyota 
>>>> spokeswoman. "Maybe the hot rodders of tomorrow are the people who 
>>>> want to get in there and see what they can do about increasing fuel 
>>>> economy."
>>>> Plugged or unplugged?
>>>> The extra batteries let Gremban drive for 20 miles with a 50-50 mix 
>>>> of gas and electricity. Even after the car runs out of power from 
>>>> the batteries and switches to the standard hybrid mode, it gets the 
>>>> typical Prius fuel efficiency of around 45 mpg. As long as Gremban 
>>>> doesn't drive too far in a day, he says, he gets 80 mpg.
>>>> "The value of plug-in hybrids is they can dramatically reduce 
>>>> gasoline usage for the first few miles every day," Gremban said. 
>>>> "The average for people's usage of a car is somewhere around 30 to 
>>>> 40 miles per day. During that kind of driving, the plug-in hybrid 
>>>> can make a dramatic difference."
>>>> Gremban promotes the CalCars Initiative, a volunteer effort 
>>>> encouraging automakers to make plug-in hybrids.
>>>> Backers of plug-in hybrids acknowledge that the electricity to 
>>>> boost their cars generally comes from fossil fuels that create 
>>>> greenhouse gases, but they say that process still produces far less 
>>>> pollution than oil. They also note that electricity could be 
>>>> generated cleanly from solar power.
>>>> Gremban rigged his car to promote the nonprofit CalCars Initiative, 
>>>> a San Francisco Bay area-based volunteer effort that argues 
>>>> automakers could mass produce plug-in hybrids at a reasonable price.
>>>> But Toyota and other car companies say they are worried about the 
>>>> cost, convenience and safety of plug-in hybrids -- and note that 
>>>> consumers haven't embraced all-electric cars because of the 
>>>> inconvenience of recharging them like giant cell phones.
>>>> Automakers have spent millions of dollars telling motorists that 
>>>> hybrids don't need to be plugged in, and don't want to confuse the 
>>>> message.
>>>> Nonetheless, plug-in hybrids are starting to get the backing of 
>>>> prominent hawks like former CIA director James Woolsey and Frank 
>>>> Gaffney, President Reagan's undersecretary of defense. They have 
>>>> joined Set America Free, a group that wants the government to spend 
>>>> $12 billion over four years on plug-in hybrids, alternative fuels 
>>>> and other measures to reduce foreign oil dependence.
>>>> Gaffney, who heads the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Security 
>>>> Policy, said Americans would embrace plug-ins if they understood 
>>>> arguments from him and others who say gasoline contributes to 
>>>> oil-rich Middle Eastern governments that support terrorism.
>>>> "The more we are consuming oil that either comes from places that 
>>>> are bent on our destruction or helping those who are ... the more 
>>>> we are enabling those who are trying to kill us," Gaffney said.
>>>> Now vs. later
>>>> DaimlerChrysler spokesman Nick Cappa said plug-in hybrids are ideal 
>>>> for companies with fleets of vehicles that can be recharged at a 
>>>> central location at night. He declined to name the companies buying 
>>>> the vehicles and said he did not know the vehicles' mileage or 
>>>> cost, or when they would be available.
>>>> Others are modifying hybrids, too.
>>>> Monrovia-based Energy CS has converted two Priuses to get up to 230 
>>>> mpg by using powerful lithium ion batteries. It is forming a new 
>>>> company, EDrive Systems, that will convert hybrids to plug-ins for 
>>>> about $12,000 starting next year, company vice president Greg 
>>>> Hanssen said.
>>>> University of California, Davis, engineering professor Andy Frank 
>>>> built a plug-in hybrid from the ground up in 1972 and has since 
>>>> built seven others, one of which gets up to 250 mpg. They were 
>>>> converted from non-hybrids, including a Ford Taurus and Chevrolet 
>>>> Suburban.
>>>> Frank has spent $150,000 to $250,000 in research costs on each car, 
>>>> but believes automakers could mass-produce them by adding just 
>>>> $6,000 to each vehicle's price tag.
>>>> Instead, Frank said, automakers promise hydrogen-powered vehicles 
>>>> hailed by President Bush and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, even 
>>>> though hydrogen's backers acknowledge the cars won't be widely 
>>>> available for years and would require a vast infrastructure of new 
>>>> fueling stations.
>>>> "They'd rather work on something that won't be in their lifetime, 
>>>> and that's this hydrogen economy stuff," Frank said. "They pick 
>>>> this kind of target to get the public off their back, essentially."
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