Five Percent: Conserve Energy

Climate Change Is Important: Energy Conservation is the First Step

December 2, 2007

Lawmakers Set Deal on Raising Fuel Efficiency (more talk, still no action)

Category: News,Political,Transportation – Tom Harrison – 11:09 pm

Friday, it appears that some additional congressional talking was done about CAFE standards, leading glacially towards a bill that seems to be more likely to pass, despite the car companies’ claims of how badly it would harm their businesses. My observation is that they seem to be more culpable themselves of harming their businesses than any past or present government actions have ever been. (more…)

November 16, 2007

No More Free Ride for SUVs – CAFE Standards Must Be Stonger

Category: Economics,Editorial,News,Policy,Transportation – Tom Harrison – 9:33 pm

A while back, I was dismayed by the incredibly lame increases in light “truck” corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) standards put forward by the Bush administration’s Environmental Plundering Agency (EPA). Later, Environmental Defense helped win a victory in California courts. Today, another big victory, this time lead by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NDRC).

Today, the 9th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals rejected the Bush administration’s weak fuel economy standard for sport-utility vehicles and other light-duty trucks. The court upbraided the administration for setting zero value on reducing the carbon dioxide emissions that cause global warming when setting fuel economy standards. The court also faulted the administration for leaving a gaping loophole that has allowed auto manufacturers to classify passenger cars as trucks subject to weaker fuel economy standards.

Go NRDC and all the others that made this happen. In your face, EPA!

March 21, 2007

Cars By The Numbers: Only 20% of annual CO2 Emissions — Drive More

Category: Rants,Save Fuel,Transportation – Tom Harrison – 6:10 pm

Yeah, get a bigger car. Drive more. Screw the hybrid golf carts: I want a Hummer. And now I feel entirely justified, because this report from Environmental Defense, a bunch of tree-hugging, commie, smarty-pantses show clearly that car emissions account for only 20% of annual US global warming emissions. Not even worth messing with. (I’m joking)

read more | digg story

December 25, 2006

Call an SUV an SUV, and Mean It

Category: Economics,Editorial,Transportation – Tom Harrison – 11:07 pm

The “Clear Skies” Initiative and the “Healthy Forests” Act are some of the more glaring euphemisms of the Bush administration. They also worked their magic with “cut and run” and “climate change” (sometimes known as global warming). One message of the 2006 elections was that we see through some of these words (yes, just as we saw through Clinton’s lie about “that woman”).

We should stand up and call something what it is. We need not come up with over-statements, or under-statements, or mis-statements to describe something: we seem to have said that, as a nation, we are able to discern what a thing is, on its face.

Let’s call an SUV an SUV. (more…)

July 17, 2006

One Person in a Big Truck

Category: Conservation,Rants,Save Fuel,Transportation – Tom Harrison – 1:09 am

We drove back from Cape Cod today after a long weekend. There sure are a lot of large vehicles on the road … and hardly any small or efficient ones. Repeatedly, we observed trucks of the class Expedition/Yukon/Suburban/Tahoe carrying a single person. Compared to the average mileage, these behemoths do poorly: where average is ~25 MPG highway, they get about 1/2 of average. Our Prius today arrived from our trip in our driveway reporting average mileage of 48.2 MPG, which is about 2x better than average, so about 4x better than the big truck SUVs.

I hear people saying the Prius is small. They need room for … something. I am not sure what. (more…)

June 10, 2006

I need an SUV

Category: Little Things,Save Fuel,Transportation – Tom Harrison – 5:36 pm

We went to the shopping mall today. Apparently, I need an SUV, since it’s quite clear that everyone else in Newton has one. As we drove through the parking garage, we started counting as we drove past parked vehicles. SUV, SUV, car, SUV, car, car, SUV, SUV, minivan, SUV. There were more non-cars than cars. Yes, more than half. What I want to know is (more…)