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JMartin
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Eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow we die. Migrating Monarch butterfly populations have dropped 90%, honeybees are dying like flies (pun intended), seas are rising and fish are dying. FUBAR
@mahonj I was probably not very clear. Not only will many elderly need the lower cost, but some of them will fear getting in a taxi driven by a stranger, particularly an Uber type operation. But they may be fine with riding a car that drives itself, after they try it once or twice.
And I hope Hendrik is correct. Not only do the economics of self-driving vehicles look good, but the societal benefits for an aging population argue for self-driving taxi's -- safe, secure, and they won't drive through the front of the building.
From what I am reading about India in both solar and wind, they may be less dependent on oil than the US in the near future. China's leaders may be doing everything they can to grow the economy, but they are not foolish enough to build that economy on dependence on the Middle East for the long-term.
That will only happen if the crop of current politicians who want the US to control the world will let go when we no longer need middle east oil. I think South America will free itself of energy dependence before we do. http://cleantechnica.com/2013/01/06/94-renewable-energy-by-2017-is-goal-for-nicaragua/
I am surprised no one bothered to look at the current prices. Gold and platinum are selling at about the same price right now -- Gold $1193, and Platinum $1139. So I guess the real issue is how much is used.
Do you really think drones will be more fuel efficient delivery vehicles than driverless trucks?
I know this is the GreenCARcongress website, but Yoatman and others seem to totally dismiss the broader applications of fuel cells, including home heating and electric production, grid balancing of renewables, etc. Why does one technology have to be judged as the WINNER and for one purpose only?
HaveyD: Not so. Most fuel cell vehicles will be plug in hybrids, so the majority of miles, particularly city, will be on battery. Far fewer FC distribution posts will be needed than the current gas pumps.
DM: something could be done about what? I forgot the subject.
If this is a mandate for new vehicles, why not start now, or as soon as regs are promulgated? Then the fleets would be 50% (or more) by 2025. Let's get serious.
Harvey is right. I have solar and pay ~$10 per month connect charge with net metering. I get a small check each year for the excess electricity produced. I have no objection to that connect fee. If it went to $50, that might be different.
I have no expertise, but I would think going off the grid would not be good for most individuals or our overall economy. However, I can see the development of many microgrids, connected by national lines (HVDC) to balance loads and use renewable resources. In 15 years, most homes and buildings will have fuel cells for that winter heat while they produce more electricity. The grid will be needed to manage it all and the fee is just a cost of doing business -- like road taxes.
I continue to be fascinated by the either/or debates in these threads. As technology develops markets will change, but I suspect there will be a place for both BEV and FCEV. The real game changer for fuel cells will be in-home use, where it can heat the house and generate electricity to charge the PHEV in winter. Distributed energy and new storage schemes will change our world, we just don't yet know how.
DavidJ: Fuel duties will not help the poor to buy EV's. It will just keep them poorer and probably out of the market. You are probably correct about initial purchase. If there were political will to do a bonus/malus program, at least those who buy new cars every year would fill the used car pipeline with more efficient cars eventually.
Don't be stepping on my religion, or my lizard. Who will lead me?
CheeseEater88: You introduce an interesting idea for car sharing. My guess is that the software could allow riders to choose private or shared rides and charge differential pricing accordingly. That way the inefficiencies of many stops (the major problem with bus and light rail) can be eliminated for those who are willing to pay. Others can save $.
Roger, I share your concerns about job creation and other social ills. I don't think paying them to drive vehicles is necessarily the answer. We need to address these issues as a society, but maintaining outmoded work models is not the answer. India used to require people to spin yarn at home in order to keep them employed. That did not work out so well.
Roger: Your parents are a different generation from the one coming up. I think we will see autonomous cars used for short trips like to the grocery, Costco, AND to public transit--probably PRT which is simply autonomous vehicles on elevated rail. Yes, some people will want their status vehicle or one for travel, but not for everyday use. The aging population will help drive (pardon the pun) this trend.
If we become energy independent, the middle east may lack funds and focus to export their wars. Then we can leave it to them to rebuild their civilization, or destroy it. Is it possible to have another "dark ages" in only part of the world?
Air and Water transport seem to be the biggest challenges. Investment in current or foreseeable near-term technology can address most on-ground surface transport emission issues.
I also am not an engineer, so take this for what it is worth. If electrolysis can be done efficiently, then why not use wind and solar for the base load, excess from wind and solar for electrolysis, and nuclear as steady-state generation, adding to the grid if needed, but otherwise for electrolysis or pyrolysis?
I don't understand why posters insist on declaring winners in a race that has just begun. If you can tell me exactly what gasoline will cost 5 years from now, maybe you can tell me how much electricity or hydrogen will cost. But I won't believe it until a winner emerges. I personally think there is a place for all of these technologies. Among other things, hydrogen, whether cheap or not, can provide certainty that renewable electricity cannot. It is not a question of which is the cheapest or best technology, it is a matter of what mix works. After all, I can buy 3 grades of gasoline or diesel, and guess what -- they all sell, and at different prices. Explain that.
Better economy, consumer confidence, and banks lending money = more trucks and SUV's being sold. Lower cost of gas adds psychological boost as well -- more than financial.