Category Archives: fuel economy

CtB vs CtO and greening taxi fleets

A brief discussion about the economic imperatives for greening the nation’s taxi fleets. But, first, acronym definition:

  • CtB:  Cost to Buy: acquisition price, how much to purchase something
  • CtO: Cost to Own: total ownership costs, from purchase through operating to disposal

Quite simply, moving our collective mindset from CtB to CtO is a societal imperative.

But, to question of greening taxi fleets:  When it comes to these issues, while the CtB is slightly higher, the CtO figures are overwhelming for moving taxi fleets (rapidly) toward hybrids or other high-fuel efficiency vehicles.  This is something that should be happening nearly everywhere in the country. Now!!!!

Yet, obstacles exist …

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Bethesda Bagels vs County Executive’s SUV?

Two Washington Post articles in the past week provide an interesting little localized contrast of the challenges related to finding a path toward an Energy Smart future.
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Energy COOL: An affordable PHEV? Available soon?

AFS Trinity, a leading company in flywheel and other power storage systems, has just announced a 150 mile per gallon plug-in-hybrid variant of a Saturn VUE.  

“Extreme Hybrids™ don’t need high priced technology and don’t require new or expensive fuels, such as hydrogen, which, according to Argonne National Labs, will cost twice as much as gasoline at the pump and require installation of an infrastructure costing half a trillion dollars. The Extreme Hybrid™ is not a concept,” [AFS Trinity CEO] Furia said, “but a practical alternative that relies on cheap electricity from America’s vast existing energy infrastructure—the electric power grid.” 

We are talking an application of technology placed on top of an existing McSUV hybrid and achievement of significant results, reportedly in a path that will be quite affordable in the mass market application.

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Energy and the D Presidential Candidates

Time for an Energy Conversation …

An Energy Conversation about the Democratic Party presidential candidates and their approaches to energy and, closely related, global warming.

For too long, I’ve owed it to myself to seek to write a discussion of the Democratic field and their energy policies.  The rather absurd challenge: that 100 pages of notes, quotes, and otherwise look more appropriate for a monograph (or a Steve Gilliard-like series, even if it would be a shadow of his work) rather than a single posting.  My note-taking and contemplating has inhibited, rather than facilitated, contrasting the candidates thus, instead, this diary seeks to provoke and promote a conversation rather than reach some definitive statement.

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Excuse me as I take a shower …

Let me luxuriate in the feeling of feeling played, of feeling used.  The sullied feeling is just such a joyous thing to have.

Many excoriated me (in multiple venues, private and public) for not being ‘political’ enough since I was not joyously celebrating the Energy Bill that passed from the House and was tarnishing my praise for the political courage and strength of action by pointing to the Energy Bill’s flaws.

And, well, perhaps sadly, I watched my language a little bit and ‘pimped’ support for this bill that might have been ‘strong’ in political terms but was simply inadequate in face of the very real challenges before this nation and the globe (Peak Oil, Global Warming, Etc …)

Hmmm …

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S-CHIPing Energy: Time for Action!

The Democratic Party controlled Congress is attacked for inaction. Inaction in the face of Republicans who are not interested in seeing movement forward. Inaction in the face of a President who seems intent on his belief that “negotiation” is a four-letter word.  As Nancy Pelosi put it,

Democrats want to work with the President, yet he continues to engage in the same tired rhetoric that does not serve the best interests of the American people.

Instead of working with Democrats, the President is trying to prevent progress. Democrats will continue to take our country in a New Direction.

Well, the Energy Bill that is working in Congress doesn’t look to be inaction.  Like S-CHIP, it is a meaningful measure that — while far from perfect — will lay the groundwork for progressive energy policy, if adopted and if signed into law. Like S-CHIP, it is a meaningful measure that — while far from perfect — will advance the situation in meaningful ways, if adopted and if signed into law. And, like S-CHIP, this sensible legislation almost certainly will face a Presidential veto.

Your mission, should you decide to accept it… Help Nancy Pelosi, Ed Markey, and others Whip the Congress into shape to pass this legislation.

Call and write your Congressional representatives (INCLUDING REPUBLICANS!), demanding that they support this legislation which will serve as a critical downpayment for dealing with our energy and global warming challenges.

Your mission, should you decide to accept it… Give Mr 26% the choice between sensible legislation become law or stamping it with a Scarlet V to help further cement his status as the WPE (Worst President, Ever).

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10 Steps to a Low-Carbon Economy?

The Center for American Progress just released its 10-step plan to a Low-Carbon Economy.  Based on an early look at the summary pages, great stuff and, well, ho-hum, and well, missing elements.  But, looking forward to seeing the full report.

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