Friday, January 26, 2007

Dubya's misleading energy policies and the good folks at Dupont

George W. Bush speaks at the Dupont Theater

Strengthening America's Energy Security and Improving the Environment

11:01 A.M. EST

THE PRESIDENT: Thank you all. Please be seated. Thanks for coming. (Applause.) Thanks for such a warm welcome here in Delaware. I thank you, for those of you who stayed up for the speech last night, thanks. (Laughter.) If you're 60 and over, it's a little late to stay up, I understand. But it's exciting always to go in front of the Congress. And I appreciate the good Senator, Tom Carper, for joining us, and thanks for bringing along Martha, a DuPont alumna, by the way. (Applause.)

But first I want to thank all the good folks at DuPont for really leading with your brains. And as the Secretary of Energy, Sam Bodman, told me coming in -- he said, when he was -- see, he's like a graduate from MIT, which -- so he's a smart guy and I'm the President. But anyway -- (laughter.) It's the way it works sometimes, you know. (Applause.) He said, when he went to MIT, they looked at DuPont as a case study on how to make sure science and practical applications came together. And that's what I saw today -- I'm going to spend -- as I said, I'm going to spend a little time talking about. And so I want to thank -- Chad, thank you and the team for inviting me, and all the good employees for taking time to come and visit.

And yadayda bush*t etc, but here are some exerpts:

Now, the good news is, is that we're on the verge of some unbelievable technological breakthroughs. At this company you've got 2,500 scientists; some of the smartest people in our country work here, all trying to develop new technologies -- this isn't anything new for DuPont, by the way, this is like what you've been doing for a long time -- but trying to develop new technologies to help us solve this problem. And that's why I've come here. You're employing the best minds possible to address the problem of economic and national security and environmental issues, because we're dependent on oil. And the American people have got to know that you're making progress.

Part of my request to Congress is going to be, we want to put $2.7 billion of your money to help concerns and smart people develop new ways of powering our homes and powering our automobiles. We're making some progress. Let me just share a couple of things that we're doing. One, we're spending a lot of your money on clean coal technology. The reason why is we've got a lot of coal. If you want to be less dependent on oil from overseas -- and by the way, we import about 60 percent of our oil today. In 1985, it was 27 percent of our oil. So we're becoming exponentially more dependent

We're also spending money on wind and solar. As a matter of fact, I saw your solar panel expert. And we spent a little time on -- here's the dream. The dream is, some day the technology will be such that you'll be -- your house will become a little power generator. And if you use -- if you got excess electricity generated by solar, you'll be able to feed it back into your grid. Is that possible? Yes, it's possible. As a matter of fact, the advance in solar technology has been quite dramatic. There's more advance still to be done, which requires your money being spent to help concerns develop new solar energy.

Just a couple of things that are happening that are interesting: One, we began a hydrogen initiative that -- where a lot of smart folks are beginning to research whether or not we can power automobiles by hydrogen. We think it's possible. But it's not going to be possible until I'm 75, which is probably 15 years from now. Your children may very well likely be driving in automobiles powered by hydrogen -- the waste product which is water, by the way. But something has got to happen in the interim. I mean, we can't wait, for economic reasons or national security reasons, for hydrogen to kick in. In other words, it's still a dream.

And so we're pushing two interesting types of technologies: one, battery technologies -- lithium ionic batteries. For all you history majors out there, let me put it to you this way -- (laughter) -- one of these days you're going to plug your car into your garage, and you're going to be able to drive the first 20 miles on electricity, and your car is not going to have to look like a golf cart. (Laughter.) And that technology is coming. And we're spending money to encourage that kind of technology.

And to couple that in order to make sure we're 20 percent less dependent in 10 years, I also proposed to Congress that we change the fuel efficiency standards in our automobiles. Something that the American people don't know about is that during my administration, we changed the CAFE standard for trucks. And basically, we said we're going to take the weight of each type of truck and set a fuel standard specific to weight. It's a little hard to explain, except for it has achieved a lot of conservation efficiencies. We need to do the same thing for cars.

Secondly, we're going to purchase plug-in hybrid vehicles as soon as they hit the market. I think that will give some surety to those who have invested in new technologies to know that the federal government is going to be a purchaser, when commercially available. In other words, we're not going to waste your taxpayers' money, but we're going to participate in a new market. I don't think you want us buying above market. I think you want us to be wise about how we spend it. (Laughter.)

It is interesting to note that most of these technologies have allready been developed.
I'll just concentrate on some of the automotive concepts for now, and the fate
of any developements that interfered with the profits and motives of the Industrial War Complex aka Corporate Government.

Rob Lechner looks under the hood of one of the Lodi Electric Utility's 2001 Toyota Rav 4's on Thursday afternoon. The electric cars are completely powered from solar panels placed on the roof of a docking station. Once the cars get their full-powered one-hour charge, to drive 100 miles until empty, the excess solar energy goes back into the grid. (Brian Feulner/News-Sentinel)

Who killed the electric car?

The Lodi Electric Utility is highlighting the tragic fate of the first electric cars by showing the film "Who Killed the Electric Car?" on Monday at 6 p.m. at Hutchins Street Square.

"This is a nice opportunity to talk about alternative fuel vehicles," said Rob Lechner, manager of customer service and programs for the utility. "This keeps the issue in the forefront for the community."

For the last five years, the utility has leased three electric cars from Toyota. The RAV4-EVs are used to drive to meetings and for meter reader routes.

Lechner added the vehicles have had virtually no maintenance problems. And the utility's cars run on solar energy, not fossil fuel-generated electricity.

And another electric car that suffered the same fate...

Fans of GM Electric Car Fight the Crusher
Activists, Auto Buffs Stage Vigil to Save EV1

And the Toyota ES3 Diesel Electric suffered the same fate

Toyota Displays ES3 Concept Car at Motor Show in Frankfurt

Toyota exhibited the extremely fuel-efficient ES3 concept car at the International Frankfurt Motor Show 2001 in September. The ES3, which stands for "Eco Spirit cubic," is a four-seat vehicle that combines many of Toyota's innovative environmental technologies aimed at achieving ultra-high fuel efficiency, low CO2 emissions and easy recycling.

The ES3's outstanding fuel economy derives from its highly efficient powertrain, combined with a light and aerodynamic body. A Stop & Go powertrain management system turns off the engine when the vehicle is stationary in traffic and provides instant restart. The system allows for reduced engine workload, resulting in a reduction in fuel consumption. The ES3's curb weight is only 700 kg, which is achieved through the use of an aluminum body with plastic outer panels that is both strong and light. Further weight reductions are achieved by intelligent design of interior components, ranging from the instrument panel to seat cushions, and through the use of lighter brake calipers, suspension parts, wheels and brakes. The ES3's raised floor height and smoothed underfloor surfaces raise the amount of airflow under the car and increase airflow speed, contributing to the ES3's outstanding aerodynamics and exceptional stability at high speeds.

In developing the ES3, all aspects of recycling were taken into full consideration with special emphasis being placed on the development of materials that are compatible with a variety of recycling methods. As a new type of material, Toyota developed a biodegradable plastic made from starch extracted from sweet potatoes and other plants. This plastic was combined with natural fibers for use in the ES3's pillar garnish and other interior parts. In addition to recylability, the ES3 is free of polyvinyl chloride (PVC). Also, the reduction of the amount of lead used in light bulbs, paint and other items significantly decreases the overall volume of lead used in the ES3.

A message from Toyota

Toyota Motor Corporation discontinued production of the RAV4 Electric Vehicle worldwide in the spring of 2003. Therefore, Toyota will no longer take orders for the RAV4 EV.

Toyota remains committed to developing an "Eco Vehicle," one that will have a minimal impact on the environment. Toyota believes that in order to have a positive environmental impact, a large number of consumers must embrace the technology. In order for this to happen, the vehicle must meet the lifestyle needs of, and be affordable to, the mass market. Although a significant marketing effort was undertaken for the RAV4-EV, we only sold about 300 vehicles a year.

In addition to overall customer acceptance, technical issues tied to electric vehicles remain a major hurdle. Industry practice regards batteries to be at the end of their useful life when capacity decreases to 80% of original capacity. A battery's capacity is the amount of charge that it holds, and is commonly measured by the range of the vehicle. It is cost-prohibitive to replace an EV battery. The cost to replace the battery is more than the value of the vehicle.

Although Toyota's electric vehicle sales have proved disappointing, Toyota was able to leverage valuable technology from the development and sales of the RAV4-EV. For example, some of the technology involved in the Hybrid Synergy Drive system on the next generation Prius came from the RAV4-EV. Toyota was the first company to introduce a hybrid vehicle to the mass market in 1997. Now, the second generation Prius is coming out. It's larger, faster, gets better fuel mileage than before, and is 90 percent cleaner for smog-forming emissions than the average vehicle on the road. It is affordable and appealing to the mainstream market, which should result in an expansion in the number of consumers driving cleaner vehicles. Toyota has sold more than 100,000 hybrid vehicles worldwide, and 52,000 Prius hybrids in the United States.

Please be assured, Toyota will continue to ensure that dealers capable of servicing RAV4 EVs are located in each major metropolitan area in California throughout the 5-year powertrain warranty period of your vehicle.

We understand that many of our customers and supporters may have questions about the discontinuation of RAV4 EV production and sales. The linked Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) will provide answers to many of these questions.

Once again, thank you for your interest in the RAV4 EV.

Just to be a little bit critical about this Neoconservative ideologue who calls him self "Commander in Chief". Wouldn't it be a good idea to talk about conservation of energy and maybe a concept known as "Free Enterprise", so that "We The People" can participate in the developement and manufacture of alternative energy and advanced vehihicle concepts?

1 comment:

  1. good stuff!
    as i recall, many were ready to heed the call and change driving habits as well as the cars themselves---thirty-five years back! nobody listened us silly hippies. looks like the silly hippies were right. grrrrrrr.

    are you a santa cruz expatriate? me too! lived there from 1981-1994, mostly in aptos and la selva beach, before they got all upscale, if you catch my drift. also lived north of town for a time, between pescadero and davenport.