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Re: A Republican!!!!!! (was Re: OT: sponge burning!)

On Tue, Feb 27, 2007 at 09:34:29PM -0800, Steve Lamb wrote:
> Andrew Sackville-West wrote:
> > Obviously that kind of change can't happen overnight. Its an ugly
> > problem, no matter how you cut it.
>     And that doesn't even come close to talking about the problem that a
> purely electric car has no range at all.  I once scoffed at Harley Davidson
> "touring" motorcycles with a 3 gallon tank.  That's right about 100-120 miles
> if you run the tank dry.  At the time I was scoffing I knew of some areas in
> the west where 120 miles wouldn't get you from one gas station to the next.

Its a matter of what fits for you. It turns out that for my personal
situation (and actually, a large portion of the population) 40 mile
range gets something like 90% of the driving done just fine. Its a
matter of the right tool for the job. A short local hop, routine short
commuting, etc is ideal for the electric vehicle. Not only is it well
within range, it cuts local pollution substantially by 1) relocating
it (I know I know), 2) eliminating the very dirty first few miles of
burn in a gas car. It also saves wear and tear on the gas car due to
those critical first few miles as well. I see a future for *me* where
we have a gas mini-van for the family to go visit the coast once or
twice a year and for those occasional trips where we all go somewhere
together and 1 or 2 electric vehicles for the vast majority of our
drives as its all well within the range. 

>     So now imagine trying to drive anywhere in the western half of the US
> where your range is limited to 40 miles.  My daily commute, one way, is 40
> miles.  In short such a vehicle would, on a daily basis, make me worry whether
> I have to push it the last few feet into my parking space!

then clearly its not a solution for you. As I said -- the right tool
for the job. long term future for you probably involves some other
solution -- fuel cell (just 20 more years away !!), hydrogen
combustion, hybrid, bio-diesel, whatever. The ultimate solution is
probably a mix of technologies  targeted at specific parts of the
problem resulting in an overall improvement in the situation. 

>     By comparison my motorcycle gets 40 miles to the gallon and holds 6 and
> change of 'em.  3 round trips to work one one 1-way trip to work.  Until range
> dramatically improves it's pretty much a non-starter.  Unless, of course, we
> invest more into infrastructure to put a recharging station every 40 miles
> which can handle hundreds of cars an hour.

I will say that range is improving, but I agree that it won't be the
ultimate solution. I imagine electric will never be more than a short
haul solution, but probably a good one for that. 


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