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Future is Now!

Electric cars produce no emissions, but the electricity that they are charged up with and is made mostly from fossil fuels like coal and natural gas. Yet they do produce two-thirds fewer greenhouse gas emissions, on average, than a similarly sized car that runs on gasoline, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council

Since electric cars produce two-thirds fewer greenhouse gas emissions, we would hard pressed not to make all attempts to convert future cars into this technology.  Besides, If it’s what the people want then it should be what the people get. Mainly since the “People” are spending Billions on the auto industry in the form of bail-outs, then that should be what they get for their money.  Electric cars in the past had been kicked to the side as the public indulged its love affair with gas-guzzling SUVs and four-wheel-drive trucks, history has finally caught up with the plug-in vehicle.  Today, the Future is Now!

Cars or Natural Gas Vehicles

Pickens has come out pounding the table for natural gas-powered vehicles as the way to reduce the amount of money being sent abroad to buy oil. But with the current low natural gas price and the possibility that gas prices will remain low for an extended period of time, the economics of gas-powered vehicles is still not favorable. Based on natural gas at $5.60 per million British thermal units (Btu), the equivalent price of a gallon of gasoline would be $1.86, well below the current pump price of $2.64. The problem is that compressed natural gas lacks the infrastructure necessary to make it popular with consumers. Other technologies such as hybrids or even electric cars can achieve lower costs without the bulky tanks and limited refueling challenges.

But wait, while 1.5 million electric vehicles will save 600 million gallons of gasoline a year, the 15 million Prius class hybrids will save approximately 2.4 million gallons of gasoline. So score one for the hybrids! Now, if we look at the environmental balance, the internal combustion engine releases 20.35 pounds of CO2 annually. The fully electric vehicle is cleaner but not CO2 free. The power plants that generate the electricity release a national average of 9.68 pounds of CO2 per equivalent gallon of gasoline. Therefore, the 1.5 million fully electric cars would cut CO2 emissions by 2.9 million tons. On the other hand, the 15 million Prius class vehicles would reduce annual CO2 emissions by 24.4 million tons.

Found this great article Is the Electric Car Worth It and I think you will enjoy.

Timeline: History of the Electric Car

1832-1839
Scottish inventor Robert Anderson invents the first crude electric carriage powered by non-rechargeable primary cells.

1835
American Thomas Davenport is credited with building the first practical electric vehicle — a small locomotive.

1859
French physicist Gaston Planté invents the rechargeable lead-acid storage battery. In 1881, his countryman Camille Faure will improve the storage battery’s ability to supply current and invent the basic lead-acid battery used in automobiles.

1891
William Morrison of Des Moines, Iowa builds the first successful electric automobile in the United States.

Thomas Edison and an electric car. Photo courtesy of the Smithsonian.Thomas Edison and an electric car. Courtesy of the Smithsonian

1893
A handful of different makes and models of electric cars are exhibited in Chicago.

1897
The first electric taxis hit the streets of New York City early in the year. The Pope Manufacturing Company of Connecticut becomes the first large-scale American electric automobile manufacturer.

1899
Believing that electricity will run autos in the future, Thomas Alva Edison begins his mission to create a long-lasting, powerful battery for commercial automobiles. Though his research yields some improvements to the alkaline battery, he ultimately abandons his quest a decade later.

1900
The electric automobile is in its heyday. Of the 4,192 cars produced in the United States 28 percent are powered by electricity, and electric autos represent about one-third of all cars found on the roads of New York City, Boston, and Chicago.

to view NIKOLA TESLA – THE MISSING SECRETS

Nikola Tesla was truly a remarkable man who felt his inventions should be to the benefit of all of man as opposed to many of his contemporaries way of thinking.  The question that now looms in the balance is: Are we using technology that men like Lewis Latimer, Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison presented to the world for the benefit of many, to now the benefit for just a few? Are we not giving them credit or continuing to not acknowledge their genius by how we treat the planet and it’s inhabitants?

In 2012 an automobile bearing the name of Tesla is going to hit the markets, a car that is traveling in excess of 200-400 miles before having to be recharged.

The say the world was not ready for a man like this; that he was ahead of his time. If Nikola was with us today, would the powers that be allow his type of genius to go on unabated?

Since ²⁄³rds  of the automobiles on the US roads were fueled by gasoline, the interest in a electric car was nearly totally abandoned until 1996.  Do we keep abandoning good stewardship for the sake of money?

More Timeline: From 2009

2009

February
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 allocates $2 billion for development of electric vehicle batteries and related technologies. The Department of Energy adds another $400 million to fund building the infrastructure necessary to support plug-in electric vehicles.

April
Prime Minister Gordon Brown announces that the British government will promote the use of electric vehicles in the U.K. by offering a £2,000 subsidy to purchasers. A high-ranking government official estimates that 40% of all cars in Britain will need to be electric or hybrid for the country to reach it’s goal of cutting 80% of its CO2 emissions by 2050.

Chrysler files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. As part of its restructuring, Chrysler forms a partnership with the Italian car maker Fiat.

May
President Obama announces a new gas-mileage policy that will require automakers to meet a minimum fuel-efficiency standard of 35.5 miles a gallon by 2016.

June

The Tesla RoadsterThe Tesla Roadster

The Department of Energy awards $8 billion in loans to Ford, Nissan, and Tesla Motors to support the development of fuel-efficient vehicles. The automaker loans are the first distributions from a larger $25 billion fund created under the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007.

General Motors, the leading producer of automobiles for most of the 20th Century, files for bankruptcy protection. While strong GM brands such as Chevrolet, Cadillac and GMC are slated to continue, smaller names like Saturn, Hummer and Pontiac will be sold or closed. The federal government will hold a 61 percent stake in the reborn General Motors.

August
Nissan unveils its new electric car, called the LEAF (“Leading, Environmentally Friendly, Affordable, Family Car”). The LEAF is capable of a maximum speed of more than 90 mph, can travel 100 miles on a full charge, and has a battery that can be recharged to 80% of its capacity in 30 minutes. Similar to the Better Place initiative in Israel, Nissan plans to work with the Japanese government and private companies to set up charging station networks across several countries. The first production LEAFs are scheduled to go on sale in Japan, Europe, and the U.S. in the fall of 2010.

Late 2009
Though a few electric cars and plug-in hybrids are currently available on the market, several new models including the Nissan LEAF, Chevrolet Volt, and Mitsubishi i MiEV are scheduled to hit the streets in the near future. Toyota, creator of the popular Prius hybrid, has thus far declined to deliver a fully electric car.

Despite promising signs, the electric car will need to navigate a bumpy road before it can become a viable option for many drivers. Challenges to mass adoption include high sticker prices, limited battery life and travel range, and building charging stations and other infrastructure to support electric vehicles.

Sources:Hybridcars.com: HistoryElectric Auto Association: Electric Vehicle HistoryIEEE Power Engineering Society: “Electric Vehicles In The Early Years Of The Automobile” by Carl SulzbergerAbout.com: The History of Electric VehiclesEconogics: EV HistorySmithsonian Institution: Edison After Forty,Who Killed the Electric Car?

 

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  1. January 20, 2011 at 10:21 am

    Can I just say what a relief to find someone who beyond a doubt knows what they’re talking about on the internet. You always know how to bring an issue to light and make it be significant. More people need to read this and understand this side of the story. I cant believe youre not more popular because you definitely have the gift.

  2. January 23, 2011 at 10:42 am

    By a long shot, one of the best article l have come across on this valuable subject. I quite go along with with your assumptions and will thirstily look forward to your future updates.

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