When the NOAA announced the results of its acidic study of the oceans last spring, I asked one simple question, “You claim the oceans are more acidic now than they have been in 800,000 years and it is due to human, specifically American, activity. Where was the human population that caused the acidic level to be higher 800,000 years ago?” I never received a reply because the researchers went into the study with a preconceived theory that man was to blame and never looked at any other possibility. To them, my question wasn’t worthy of an answer.
So morally I am opposed to the regulations coercing me to accept “green” technology. Fiscally, since it has been proven that “green” economics cost about seven times more than fossil fuel technology, I am obliged to rebel against further government waste into the field. This position puts me squarely at odds with the current U.S. Administration, the current mood of many sovereign states and the United Nations.
But in this case, the grass isn’t “greener” on the other side of the fence. I’m just fine where I find myself, particularly when I witness how a green economy devastated Spain, how green technology failed in Solyndra, and especially when I can gauge the mood of my fellow Americans in the current car sales indices.
Ron Adner, a professor of strategy (type undisclosed) at Dartmouth, chimed in on this last subject early Friday morning.(1) Noting the climb in vehicle sales spurred by the rise in fuel prices, Adner noted the enthusiasm among buyers didn’t extend as well to the electric models. He cited two factors, both economic, as to why buyers were shying away from the new “green technology” offerings. First, he noted, “These autos cost at least $30,000 (real up-front green) due to the their batteries which typically account for half the cost of the vehicle.” Then he added, “Most Americans see their vehicle as an investment so they look at the resale value. What will a 2012 Volt resell for in 2016? It will be like trying to sell a used computer, current technology does not hold its value.”
A loss of green on the back side, combined with the loss of green on the front end and the green technology is a lose-lose-lose proposition in these man-made contraptions because the battery’s life also comes into play. The battery is the most expensive part of the vehicle and it also has the shortest life span which is backward to a gasoline-powered car where the engine lasts a lot longer than the body. There is a fear factor that the battery will fail when you most need it, leaving you stranded.
Thus there will have to be a fuel supply system put into place–a refuelling station for the electric vehicles. But, unlike a gas car, you can’t pull over and refuel in a few minutes, recharging a battery takes time, lots of time. Ultimately, the cost of operating one of these electric cars will be computed by some government hack buried in the bowels of a massive office building. He, she or they will find the electric car cannot average 60 MPH as a gas vehicle can because of the extended recharge time. So there will have to be a system of removing a depleted battery and replacing it with a charged battery quickly and efficiently so it can compete with the gas-swilling, carbon-emitting beast you currently use.
But these batteries contain substances which are toxic to the very Earth they were designed to protect, so a government agency will have to be established to regulate and control the possible exposure to the Earth by replacing, storing and transporting these batteries in the refuelling station. These extra costs, of course, should be paid by the idiot using the battery–but government will determine that will be too onerous so there will be a tax placed on something most of us use–like gasoline–to help support the “green technology” that will save the planet from over-heating.
Whether you like it or not, you and I and all the people rushing in to buy new, more fuel-efficient gas vehicles while shunning the unreliable, prone-to-catch-fire, government-endorsed, electric toys (I call them toys legally because I had Tonka trucks bigger when I was a child) will be paying a heavy price to let somebody else feel good about themselves as they “save” the planet by going green.
Isn’t that the end result of most government regulation? Every wallet will be a lot lighter so somebody who can afford to feel superior to everyone else can have the opportunity to put on airs while being towed to a place where they can actually get enough juice (from a coal powered electric plant) to go another 211,200 feet (more or less) in their superior car.
When a free market economy can develop something that will be economically equivalent with the current pollution-inducing situation, then I’ll support it. But as long as government has to subsidize “green” technology, anyone who uses it will be losing the economy battle. Government is too stupid to know “quality of life” is no good if you can’t enjoy it, that’s why it’s regulations do not work.
(1) Adner’s comment were part of a video/report posted on Yahoo’s Daily Ticker 3-2-2012, “Why the Electric Car is Doomed to Fail”
All comments or suggestions on the “Rant” are welcome. This is a semi-weekly information commentary on the state of government folly in our times. There is so much data to sift that your particular concern may not get addressed as quickly as you’d like but, if it concerns the economy, it will eventually get into this series of writings. Thank you for your continued interest–Mike