free html hit counter Peak Oil Debunked: 375. HEAVY DUTY ELECTRIC TRUCK

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

375. HEAVY DUTY ELECTRIC TRUCK

The Port of Los Angeles has partnered with the Balqon Corporation, a US manufacturer of electric trucks, to develop the world's most powerful electric truck. This monster electric tractor is capable of hauling a fully-loaded 40-foot cargo container (weighing 60,000 pounds), at a top speed of 40mph and maximum distance of 30 miles. Here's the video:



According to the data sheet, these electric trucks can operate with "fuel" costs 75-90% less than similar diesel vehicles. The Port has approved the production of 20 of these trucks for use as "hostlers" (tractors for moving containers within the port) Source, and ordered five more for on-road use Source.

This truck conclusively debunks the myth that large trucks and machines (like farm equipment) cannot be driven with batteries. The technology is clearly well-developed and practical. Combining these large trucks with the mid-size electric trucks we have already discussed in #320, there are clearly no significant barriers to swapping all local freight traffic to electric trucks.

Here, of course, the America-centric doomsquad steps in with the usual rejoinder: "Uh huh. Give me a call when you can get one of those toys to go from LA to Chicago, asshat. LOL." The answer to that is straightforward. It's a different kind of electric truck called an "electric train", developed about 120 years ago:


by JD

104 Comments:

At Tuesday, August 26, 2008 at 6:51:00 AM PDT, Blogger JD said...

As always, please use the Name/URL option (you don't have to register, just enter a screen-name) or sign your anonymous post at the bottom. The conversation is better without multiple anons.
Thank you,
JD

 
At Tuesday, August 26, 2008 at 9:09:00 AM PDT, Anonymous benny "peak demand" cole said...

Finally, a fresh post. JD, please post much more frequently.
The sniveler-doomers seem clueless when it comes to electric vehicles.
The GM-Volt, for all of GM's hubris and flaws, looks like an amazing vehicle. 40 miles on a charge, then 50 mpg on the engine. And it is first gen. from a stodgy company. Imagine the EVs of 2020!
70 percent of oil in U.S. is used in transportation. If the price of gasoline goes up, we can expect this sector to switch to batteries, and for demand to crater.
This heavy-duty trucks are living example to in-town trucking can be battery-powered.
Actually for city-dwellers, the future is better than ever: Cleaner air, quieter streets may come soon.
If oil doesn't crumble down back to $30, which it could.

 
At Tuesday, August 26, 2008 at 10:23:00 AM PDT, Anonymous jd was right said...

One of things that the doomers don't understand is that going to electric vehicles also cuts down on pollution substantially. that port emits lots of pollutants so that is an extra incentive beyond rising fuel costs to go electric.

 
At Tuesday, August 26, 2008 at 10:29:00 AM PDT, Anonymous jd was right said...

"40 miles on a charge"

People don't know just how revolutionary this is. about 70% of people drive 40 miles or less commuting to work round trip. if you drive more than that but you can charge you car at work(which they will let you eventually just show you'll show up at work) the amount of people covered by 80 mile all-electric range is in the 98% range. you won't need oil in 10 years to commute.

 
At Tuesday, August 26, 2008 at 10:50:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Brother Cadfan said...

Wasn't there some coal mine which has been converted to an all electric vehicle fleet?

 
At Tuesday, August 26, 2008 at 11:10:00 AM PDT, Anonymous benny "peak demand" cole said...

Someday, if the sniveler-doomers are right about oil prices (and they could be very wrong), you will have 220-v hookups at work or even in shopping mall parking garages. At parking meters on the street
At 220v your charge up time is cut in half. Add to that, some companies are touting rapid-recharge lithium batteries.
I hope I live long enough to see it. I grew up in Los Angeles, when you could not see mountains from more than a mile away. You could see the smog on a football field.
Someday, cars will not pollute the air. Amazing.

 
At Tuesday, August 26, 2008 at 11:34:00 AM PDT, Blogger Ari said...

Wasn't there some coal mine which has been converted to an all electric vehicle fleet?

This is... errmm... words cannot...

Wow.

This is like paying people to polish rocks in a manure pile.

Oh well. I guess it's better than nothing.

 
At Tuesday, August 26, 2008 at 12:11:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Dan said...

Battery and Ultracapitor's are advancing every day. I'm betting in five year, affordable electric cars will be available which 200+ mile range. Meaning a electric truck will also be go much further than 40 miles between charges.

See the following from Nissan and a company (one of many) 1st Lighten the Load Inc. working on new Ultracapitors.

Nissan Says Newer Lithium Batteries Improve Electric Car Range
Advances in lithium-ion battery technology will boost the range of electric vehicles to 400 kilometers (248 miles) by 2015, the head of research and development at Nissan Motor Co. said Wednesday.

Mitsuhiko Yamashita, Nissan's executive vice president for research and development, said advances in lithium-ion battery technology will dramatically boost the operating range of electric vehicles, potentially broadening their appeal. The breakthrough will come with so-called fourth-generation lithium-ion batteries that will be ready by 2015, he said.

Also check out, http://www.1-ltl.com/index.htm

2. ELECTRICAL GRID STORAGE -TWO NEW CAPACITOR TECHNOLOGIES reduce hardships caused by oil. Electric energy from renewable sources now has the same ease of transport and use as that held by oil. This new storage technology can use nearly any type of capacitor dielectric and make capacitors in high volumes using automated manufacturing lines. It is non toxic and made from common inexpensive industrial grade materials. There will never be a shortage in supply and takes the pressure off of the world's limited oil reserves.

 
At Tuesday, August 26, 2008 at 3:33:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Frankie said...

JD, Electric trains are great but what about biofuels as well?? I know, I know, when we use corn for biofuels, food prices rise and people starve. But, Algae fuel is making huge strides every day. I think the solution is to eventually turn over our petroleum run cars to electric and use bio-diesel (specifically algae) for our Semi's, and other large vehicles that transport food and other products cross country.

 
At Tuesday, August 26, 2008 at 6:16:00 PM PDT, Blogger Barba Rija said...

Hey, didn't you get the memo, JD? The world's gonna end, so why bother with solutions? This is yet another ass-baked idea, this one of electric vehicles. Pff. Pure crapazoid invented by cornucopianistas who can't see the obvious reality that we are going to a cliff and...

(Poe's Law)

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 12:05:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Cosmin said...

Hi JD and thankyou for the new post. It's actually a welcome update to what you wrote some time ago about electric commercial trucks and vehicles.
Here's a link to the google translation of a romanian article about how Japan is preparing for the age of the electric vehicle. Maybe you can share more with us on what's written there? I'm sure you're the best person here to give us more info. ;)
http://translate.google.com/translate?u=http%3A%2F%2Feconomie.hotnews.ro%2Fstiri-auto-4107864-japonia-pregateste-mod-serios-pentru-venirea-masinilor-electrice.htm&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&sl=ro&tl=en

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 6:19:00 AM PDT, Anonymous philbiker said...

The GM-Volt, for all of GM's hubris and flaws, looks like an amazing vehicle. 40 miles on a charge, then 50 mpg on the engine. And it is first gen. from a stodgy company.

Well, not quite first generation. Remember GM has a veritable mountain of practical experience in electric vehicles from their successful EV-1 experiment. If the company is smart (it is) they will parlay that electric vehicle experience into a competitive advantage (which is exactly what they are doing with the volt).

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 6:45:00 AM PDT, Blogger DB said...

Incisive as ever JD.

Given that the economy is already responding to impending shortage by producing non-oil based medium trucks, short-haul heavy duty trucks, electric cars, not to mention all the electric rail being built in cities throughout the world, perhaps we can say that though there will be no extra supply of OIL brought on by the price signals, it looks like the economists have the last laugh and Jay Hansen is wrong:

High price signals are producing alternate modes of TRANSPORTATION.

How long, I wonder, till we have long range heavy electric trucks?
(Perhaps Shai Agassi has a solution to this - swapping out batteries every couple hundred miles will work for electric trucks)

I can't wait to see Jim Kunstler debunked decisively as I sit in a traffic jam on the I95 with my grand kids, watching all the electric semis.

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 9:04:00 AM PDT, Anonymous benny "peak demand" cole said...

Philbiker-
Excellent point. I meant so say, first-gen commercially introduced vehicle. I don't know all the details, but I gather the EV-1 was not commercially introduced.
And maybe GM is smart. Or maybe not. They were No. 1 in the USA, and now they are not. Their market value has cratered to nearly nothing. They still have executive dining rooms, and employee cafeterias (no Silicon Valley firm would dream of seperate dining facilities).
Still, maybe GM washes all of that away with the Volt.
If things break right, and if oil prices stay high (no assurance of that), then the Volt should be a home run, and inspire copycats industry-wide.
Oil demand will shrink every year as a result.
We have seen Peak Demand. The problem is Peak Demand will result in lower oil prices.....

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 10:11:00 AM PDT, Anonymous J.C., Sr. said...

I love all this electric transportation going on. My question is. Is there something wrong with the trolley? I realize the old geniuses who designed the original trolley transit system would never have laid all those fixed metal tracks if they had modern inflatable neophreme tires to use. Why cant we add wired electric power to our streets and highways at least to our multitude semis and buses that use them? J.C., Sr.

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 10:25:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So much for wal-mart being a parasite.

Wal-Mart aims for 'greenest stores on the block'
http://www.financialpost.com/story.html?id=749698

"Mr. Cheesewright said that reducing the operating costs at its stores allows Wal-Mart to charge less for the items it sells. "

Enough with the doom and gloom.

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 10:59:00 AM PDT, Blogger Sean Daugherty said...

Bah, Wal-Mart is still a parasite. It's just intelligent enough not to kill its host :-)

Seriously, though, the peak oil doomer case seems predicated on the idea that no one is aware of the problem, let alone trying to do anything about it. Every day that goes by it seems we hear more and more facts that seem to openly contradict that argument.

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 11:19:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In order to have a real "electrifying economy". We will need to have
1) Ultracapacitor for EV

2) Fast neutron reactor with closed fuel cycle for electric generation.



I believe reality will kill electric car once again as per
reality killed EV until we have a complete replacement on fossil fuel as energy source. The answer is in NUKE, but it's going to take decades.

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 11:33:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let's imagine that 100 million cars magically converted to EV cars without using a single energy unit or precious metal like lithium.

Calculation of energy consumption
~ 500KWh for 5000KM/month
100 million x 500Kwh x 12 month = 6000000 MW h per year

How many more dirty uranium spewing coal plants are needed to meet the energy requirement of 100 million EV cars? oh dear ... Yes we need more clean FAST NEUTRON NUKE reactor & it takes alot of energy, capital and time ( decades) to build.

MATT SIMMONS IS GODDAM RIGHT. THERE IS NO EASY SOLUTION. MY FRIENDS ..

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 11:58:00 AM PDT, Blogger Ari said...

anon,

Who says it can't happen concurrently?

Why do the doomers all think that it has to happen overnight?

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 12:00:00 PM PDT, Blogger Ari said...

Also, the energy that goes into building cars doesn't matter at this point because IT'S ALREADY BEING USED.

The only wrinkle is the energy to fill up the batteries. But so what? France builds nuclear plants in a matter of years, as opposed to our decades. It can happen.

I swear, you present solutions, and all doomers think of is more problems.

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 12:56:00 PM PDT, Anonymous jd was right said...

"How many more dirty uranium spewing coal plants are needed to meet the energy requirement of 100 million EV cars?"

if you poke around a little bit you find that the answer is virtually no new power plants need to be built. if we included a few CFLs or a clothes lines with each new EV or PHEV sold we probably could take care of the increase in electricity use.

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 12:59:00 PM PDT, Anonymous jd was right said...

JD you are missing a huge wal-mart story update. wal-mart's stock is doing great this year as more people are trading down to their stores. wal-mart is thriving on the back of peak oil, not going away.

The Trade-Down Effect
http://seekingalpha.com/article/81763-the-trade-down-effect

what makes more sense? going around to five different stores to get what you want or going just to wal-mart?

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 1:39:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Brother Cadfan said...

The French ramped up Nuclear energy within a decade or less. This is a matter of historical fact. If you want to be really pedantic, nuclear energy can help unclock oil from tar sands , shale and coal. From someone who actually knows,

Best wishes

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 3:08:00 PM PDT, Blogger Barba Rija said...

"How many more dirty uranium spewing coal plants are needed to meet the energy requirement of 100 million EV cars?"

Hey, 6 000 000 MWh is 6 TWh. In 2005 alone, the USA used 105 exajoules, or 29000 TWh, from all types of sources. Considering that 40% of those is electrical, then in 2005, the USA used 15000 TWh.

Doomer, you are claiming that an extra 6 is the end of the world. How dumb can you get?

Consider your numbers again. 500KWh / month is roughly 700W, averaged. A 100 million of such devices will need 700 000 000 000W, or 700GW, which is roughly the same new production that came online from 1998 to 2008 (without any crash program whatsoever). Source.

Of course, this doesn't even add the fact that most charges would be during the night, where we are everyday wasting a lot of power.

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 7:00:00 PM PDT, Anonymous DoctorJJ said...

"How many more dirty uranium spewing coal plants are needed to meet the energy requirement of 100 million EV cars? oh dear ... Yes we need more clean FAST NEUTRON NUKE reactor & it takes alot of energy, capital and time ( decades) to build.

MATT SIMMONS IS GODDAM RIGHT. THERE IS NO EASY SOLUTION. MY FRIENDS .."

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/12/061211221149.htm

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080312140123.htm

With something as simple as smart charging to alter the timing of when we charge our vehicles, the grid would need between 0 to 8 new powerplants to power ALL the cars on the road. Doh!!!!


http://wardsauto.com/electronics/electrical_grid_ready/

That's really gotta hurt, huh doomer???

DoctorJJ

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 7:39:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Smart Charging huh ? I would be so afraid to be in a city where you are the goddam mayor. What if many of us are doing "stupid charging" in hot summer at the same time and blow off a huge power grid ? YES million will be denied the power for weeks . MILLION DUDE ! DO YOU SMELL DISASTER?

We will need more dirty and Polluting thermal plants to increase the capacity so as to prevent possible power failure.

"the grid would need between 0 to 8 new powerplants to power ALL the cars on the road. Doh!!!!"

Where is the data to show that only 0 to 8 powerplants are needed. WHat a silly estimation ..

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 7:46:00 PM PDT, Anonymous DoctorJJ said...

"Where is the data to show that only 0 to 8 powerplants are needed. WHat a silly estimation .."

Yeah, I'm sure you have done the work and have the data to refute the studies done by American Electric Power Company, the Department of Energy, and Oak Ridge National Labs. Because I'm sure you are the absolute expert with all the pertinent data and they were the ones who were talking out of their ass.

Bwahahahahahaha!!! Doomer-tard.

Seriously, did you even read those articles?

DoctorJJ

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 8:28:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Michael Morris, chairman, president and CEO of American Electric Power Co. tells Ward’s the nation’s grid in its present form could withstand an immediate turnover of at least 20% of the nation’s present vehicle fleet to plug-in technology.

"AT LEAST" 20% SILLY TARD JJ. he doesnt say at least 30%, 50% 70% , 100% without blowing off the grid. Your estimation of 0 to 8 powerplants for 100 mil vehicles is SILLY.. BAHAHAHAHAH SILLYtard. We will need more polluting thermal plants run on fossil fuel to power all these EV. Better till, we build more clean FAST NEUTRON NUKES Plants. At least i'm more pragmatic than you 0 to 8 powerplants silly plan.

I'm not a doomster,SIllytard. I'm a pragmatist, I'm an engineer.

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 9:52:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Quite a few people believe that if there is a decline in oil production, we can make up much of the difference by increasing our use of electricity--more nuclear, wind, solar voltaic, geothermal or even coal. The problem with this model is that it assumes that our electric grid will be working well enough for this to happen. It seems to me that there is substantial doubt that this will be the case.

"If frequent electrical outages become common, these problems are likely to spill over into the oil and natural gas sectors. One reason this may happen is because electricity is used to move oil and natural gas through the pipelines. In addition, gas stations use electricity when pumping gasoline, and homeowners often have natural gas water heaters and furnaces with electric ignition. These too are likely to be disrupted by electrical power outages," Tverberg wrote.


5 years after blackout, power grid Still in 'Dire Straits'

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 10:04:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It seems that fragile power grid poses a more serious concern than building more polluting coal fired plants or nuke plants

Have anyone of you put your money where your mouth is by actually owning a full E car ?

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 10:12:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

FEEL THE DARKNESS ! Bahahahah

U.S. on verge of grand-scale blackout

Five years after the worst blackout in North American history, the country’s largest utilities say the U.S. power system faces the prospect of even bigger and more damaging outages.

The specific flaws that led to 50 million people losing power in 2003 have largely been addressed, they say, but even bigger problems loom. Excess generating capacity in the system is shrinking, for example, and power-plant construction has slowed as costs to build and operate plants have soared.

At the same time, it is estimated that electricity use will increase 29 percent between 2006 to 2030 — much of it driven by residential growth, according to a government report issued in June.

“I’m really not a ‘Chicken Little’ player, but I worry that no one seems to be focusing in on this,” said Michael Morris, chairman, president and chief executive of American Electric Power, which runs the nation’s largest electricity transmission system.

Morris said massive outages this year in South Africa, which forced gold, diamond and platinum mines to stop production for five days, should serve as a warning to the United States.

Industry experts back Morris and say there is even more resistance to building new plants because of the debate over climate change and opposition to new transmission lines. The blocking of two coal-fired plants in Kansas is one example of the resistance.

“The level of excess capacity has shrunk … to a level barely within the planning toleration of the industry,” said Marc Chupka, with the Brattle Group, an energy consultant.

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 10:26:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rick Sergel, president of the North American Electric Reliability Corp., the agency that oversees the nation’s power grid, said, “We’re to the point where we need every possible resource: renewables, demand response and energy efficiency, nuclear, clean coal — you name it, we need it. And we especially need the transmission lines that will bring the power generated by these new resources to consumers.”

Construction of coal-fired generating plants has almost stopped, and new nuclear plants are years away, if they are approved at all, said Arshad Mansoor, vice president of power delivery and use for the Electric Power Research Institute. Better efficiency will go only so far, he said.

Morris, of American Electric Power, sees a potentially dire situation ahead, including the sort of power rationing that occurred in South Africa.

“It would ruin the economy ,” Morris said.

 
At Wednesday, August 27, 2008 at 10:32:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I TOLD YOU ALL SO, IT'S NEVER EASY!!!!!!!!! NOW, PLEASE SEND a letter of appreciation to Matt Simmons and peak oil pragmatists , telling them how silly you are to think that a full "electrifying" economy is as easy as a flip of palm.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 5:32:00 AM PDT, Blogger DB said...

"flip of a palm"

First of all you mean to say "flip of a switch".

In any case, it's only the doomers who protest with the line, "where's all the electricity going to come from to power all those electric trucks/suvs/trains".

Same way all the electric trucks/suvs/trains will be produced:
Slowly and with increasing speed as we go.

Even if we built a few hundred thousand electric trucks tomorrow it would have a limited effect on our electricity requirements due to the availability of off peak power.

But even a few hundred thousand electric trucks would make a MASSIVE difference to the resilience of the local delivery system.

The only way this will not happen is an Alex Scarrow oil shut off overnight scenario.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 6:32:00 AM PDT, Blogger Branch-me-do said...

Stringing electrification along the US' transcontinental railways will be a massive, massive undertaking...

...and some folks will get very rich doing it, and some other folks will get very rich maintaining it.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 6:45:00 AM PDT, Blogger DB said...

"Stringing electrification along the US' transcontinental railways will be a massive, massive undertaking...

...and some folks will get very rich doing it, and some other folks will get very rich maintaining it."

Yup. Perhaps this will be the next investment "bubble".

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 6:56:00 AM PDT, Blogger Ari said...

"AT LEAST" 20% SILLY TARD JJ. he doesnt say at least 30%, 50% 70% , 100% without blowing off the grid. Your estimation of 0 to 8 powerplants for 100 mil vehicles is SILLY.. BAHAHAHAHAH SILLYtard. We will need more polluting thermal plants run on fossil fuel to power all these EV. Better till, we build more clean FAST NEUTRON NUKES Plants. At least i'm more pragmatic than you 0 to 8 powerplants silly plan.

I'm not a doomster,SIllytard. I'm a pragmatist, I'm an engineer.


"Engineer" is a pretty broad term, and you could potentially be overreaching depending on your discipline (look at Olduvai Duncan, computer engineer). While I am in favor of fast neutron nukes if they are feasible at present, I'd also take 100 more pressurized water reactors like SONGS in a heartbeat.

The point that everyone seems to be missing in their tete-a-tete is that none of this is going to happen overnight. Saying how much energy will be needed overnight is, at best, a silly estimation. It's like estimating what would happen if all of a sudden every home in America started using LED lighting instead of incandescent/CFL. Nice little thought exercise, but not really happening overnight.

At the same time, it is estimated that electricity use will increase 29 percent between 2006 to 2030 — much of it driven by residential growth, according to a government report issued in June.

Yes, and this is definitely reason enough to listen to DrBuzz0 over at Depleted Cranium and start building nuclear power plants NOW. I agree 100%, and have agreed 100% for years.

That doesn't mean that Matt Simmons is right.

I TOLD YOU ALL SO, IT'S NEVER EASY!!!!!!!!! NOW, PLEASE SEND a letter of appreciation to Matt Simmons and peak oil pragmatists , telling them how silly you are to think that a full "electrifying" economy is as easy as a flip of palm.

Nobody has said it is easy. They're just saying that it's not impossible, as TOD or LATOC would have you believe.

It's a matter of degree.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 7:21:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

DB... This is not Doomers' doomsday fantasy. This is pragmatism. You only want to buy an EV truck or electric car when the president and chief executive of American Electric Power confidently says that the power grids are in freaking great shape and the energy capacity is in EXCESS. Nobody is going to be happy with an EV that can only be charged at off peak time to prevent another power outage that made 2003 a girl scout camp.

More importantly, The EV has to be fitted with better storage system ( ultracapacitor) than the (depleting) lithium battety.

We will probably see many of the current EV makers suffer huge losses once the consumers see through the disadvantages ( cost, energy Storage, charging and etc. )

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 7:26:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Brother Cadfan said...

The figures others have posted on the power requirements of electric vehicles seem credible to me as a physicist.

Of course, America's whole electricity system is a bit pants for the number 1 economy. I do think there are a few aspects not up to EU type safety standards. I hate plugging my laptop into it when I'm Stateside.

And no, I will certainly not be sending any letters to St Simmons.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 7:33:00 AM PDT, Blogger Ari said...

You only want to buy an EV truck or electric car when the president and chief executive of American Electric Power confidently says that the power grids are in freaking great shape and the energy capacity is in EXCESS.

Appeal to authority-- just because he says it doesn't make it true. The data suggests that he may be right to some degree, but you also need to account for the tragedy of the commons issue: why should I care about everyone else if my local grid is producing in excess?

Nobody is going to be happy with an EV that can only be charged at off peak time to prevent another power outage that made 2003 a girl scout camp.

Hasty generalization fallacy. I would be more than happy with this, seeing as I get to work on the Metro North Railroad anyway. For me, an EV would be perfect because between my fiancée and me, we only put around 70 miles on a car per week.

So for us, a plug-in at night solution would be perfect.

More importantly, The EV has to be fitted with better storage system ( ultracapacitor) than the (depleting) lithium battety.

Has to, or should be? It seems to me that a stopgap solution is better than no solution.

We will probably see many of the current EV makers suffer huge losses once the consumers see through the disadvantages ( cost, energy Storage, charging and etc. )

Disadvantages are relative. You can't just say "there are disadvantages!" and then assume the individual will see them as enough to not go that route. There are TONS of disadvantages to flying. But there is a significant advantage to it (time). We can even use 2001 as an inflection point for when the disadvantages grew as the advantages declined. Did people stop flying? Nope. Why?

The advantages still outweigh the disadvantages.

Now, I don't know that EVs are the same way, but I think there are more than one of me out there who would prefer an EV to an old-fashioned "fartmobile" as JD puts it.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 7:34:00 AM PDT, Blogger Ari said...

The figures others have posted on the power requirements of electric vehicles seem credible to me as a physicist.

But suh, I do protest suh, how can we fallaciously factor in the 2nd LAW of thermodynamics into this?

If we cannot, we are not talking peak oil.

;-)

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 8:02:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great, Do you actually own an EV yourself ? NOW ? I mean now ?

If not
A Tesla Roaster is priced at 100K , Have you actually booked an EV car yet ? Do you plan to put your money on where your mouth is ?

Regrettably , I would only consider EV when the manufacturers could resolve the electric storage issue and there is official assurance on energy capacity ( powered by excessive clean energy/new gen of nuke plants) and power grids.

I bet many of us would cold shoulder EV once they're able to get through the initial hype and actually understand the disadvantages.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 8:24:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

""Engineer" is a pretty broad term,"

A chemical engineer who understands a little of energy. Hehe ..

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 9:09:00 AM PDT, Anonymous benny "peak demand" cole said...

The sniveler-doomer websites (who are probably just a front for oil interests and traders; many cloak their true identities behind fake names) are getting more hysterical, ever since the oil bubble popped.
Hey, oil had a great bull run, nearly epic. But the bull has been gored.
The doomers always cghange the topuc when you bring up France. A nation getting 80 percent of it power from nukes, and they are building two more big plants as we speak.
Are we really supposed to believe we can't add nuke power, and solar, and wind, and geothermal to our grid? We have beening building nukes for 50 years. I think we can build a lot more. This is not exotic futuristic fanstasy -- we already build nukes, in France and all over the world.
Will consumers like the GM Volt? Well, 40 miles on a acharge and then 50 mpg on the motor. I sense conusmers will give the thunbs up or down based on price and styling as much as performance, but that performance is mind-boggling.
It is a death-ray for speculators, the OPEC-killer.
And copycat cars will come soon after.
A serious question is will we need oil in 40 years? Or, could all needs for lubricants and others uses be met by biofuels?

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 9:32:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Pragmatist said...

It's well known in the nuclear field that the commonly used thermal nuke reactors have NO FUTURE. IT HAS TO be FAST NEUTRON reactor with closed fuel cycle. It's gonna take decades to build many of them.

Fast Neutron reactor


Experts single out three aspects of the problem. First, nuclear power is a must for civilization, because there is nothing more effective or competitive invented thus far. Second, nuclear technology has no future without a closed fuel cycle. Without it, its days are numbered in this century.

The third element of the issue is fast neutron reactors. The nuclear industry is rapidly using up the scant natural resources of uranium and only fast neutron reactors can solve the fuel problem in the long term.

All countries developing nuclear power are aware that the future lies with fast reactors. France plans to finish its new project by 2040. The U.S. regrets that it froze its fast reactor program and is now trying to catch up

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 9:33:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Frankie said...

Has anybody ever considered that an electric vehicle can be charged by solar panels which would eliminate the need for a huge upgrade in the grid? Especially due to this breakthrough that MIT recently had.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 10:49:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Babun said...

Great post, good job

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 11:22:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Babun said...

I was a bit doubtful about the current state of rail transport especially with the idea I had that US railways were in rather poor condition.

Seems like the greatest freight tonnage in the US is handled by rail (pretty close to a 60/40 ratio there counting rail and truck only) so I guess further expansion shouldn't be too difficult either.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 11:37:00 AM PDT, Anonymous jd was right said...

To all those doomers who don't know how will we add all those PHEVs to the grid answer these questions.

how did we add millions of computers?

how did we add millions of cell phones, blackberries, ipods and all the other gagets of life?

what about conservation? if PHEVs were a drain utility prices would go up, people would conserve and alt energy would explode. the payoff time of solar panels on your roof would shorten considerably.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 11:40:00 AM PDT, Blogger Ari said...

babun,

Living on the East Coast, I can say that at the very least rail is not hurting out here!

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 11:49:00 AM PDT, Blogger Ari said...

Great, Do you actually own an EV yourself ? NOW ? I mean now ?

If not
A Tesla Roaster is priced at 100K , Have you actually booked an EV car yet ? Do you plan to put your money on where your mouth is ?

Regrettably , I would only consider EV when the manufacturers could resolve the electric storage issue and there is official assurance on energy capacity ( powered by excessive clean energy/new gen of nuke plants) and power grids.

I bet many of us would cold shoulder EV once they're able to get through the initial hype and actually understand the disadvantages.


No, but who cares? I live in the NYC metro area and drive less than 4K miles a year. Even that is largely discretionary, as the market is within walking distance, and I take the train (electrified rail) into the city for work.

Nyah nyah, I guess?

And if I get my way, I'll be trading in my HULKING Accord for a Smart in a few months. But really, what you're doing is throwing out a circumstantial ad hominem, another logical fallacy.

Now, to answer the thing about breeder reactors: I agree. I'd still like to see some more...uh... academic sources on the fact though. The linked source is anything BUT academic.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 12:02:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Philbiker said...

It's well known in the nuclear field that the commonly used thermal nuke reactors have NO FUTURE. IT HAS TO be FAST NEUTRON reactor with closed fuel cycle. It's gonna take decades to build many of them.

Fast Neutron reactor


You proclaim it to be so.

Are you aware of the Gen IV International Forum? Sodium cooled fast reactors like the "Integral Fast Reactor" successfully prototyped by the USA have their place, but they are not the only solution. They can be used to recycle fuel and process new fuel for pressurized and boiling water designs.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 12:05:00 PM PDT, Blogger Ari said...

I've been under the impression for a long time now (thanks to my friends in the nuclear biz) that even a tricked-up CANDU can use thorium.

Now, don't get me wrong: I'm all in favor of closing the fuel cycle. But the whole "PEAK URANIUM" myth is pretty silly.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 12:56:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Babun said...

Funny thing too you know, the most common transported good (at least in the US, measured in tonnes - is coal), so going nuclear or some other way will also free up rail freight capacity.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 1:05:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Babun said...

Of course you could also look at it the other way around - if there needs to be a large increase in the power generation capacity a lot of it is still likely (?) to come from coal, perhaps straining the freight capacity of rail systems.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 1:06:00 PM PDT, Anonymous doctorjj said...

"Michael Morris, chairman, president and CEO of American Electric Power Co. tells Ward’s the nation’s grid in its present form could withstand an immediate turnover of at least 20% of the nation’s present vehicle fleet to plug-in technology.

"AT LEAST" 20% SILLY TARD JJ. he doesnt say at least 30%, 50% 70% , 100% without blowing off the grid. Your estimation of 0 to 8 powerplants for 100 mil vehicles is SILLY.. BAHAHAHAHAH SILLYtard. We will need more polluting thermal plants run on fossil fuel to power all these EV. Better till, we build more clean FAST NEUTRON NUKES Plants. At least i'm more pragmatic than you 0 to 8 powerplants silly plan.

I'm not a doomster,SIllytard. I'm a pragmatist, I'm an engineer."


Yeah, the guy from AEP said "at least 20%". However if you would have actually read the articles you would have read stuff like this, from that same guy you quoted:

"the nation’s grid in its present form could withstand an immediate turnover of at least 20% of the nation’s present vehicle fleet to plug-in technology. 'That’s something we’re much more prepared for than people understand,' Morris says"

Or:
"the nation’s electrical infrastructure would benefit from more demand in off-peak hours, when it is expected owners would charge their vehicles overnight...
'(the addition of PHEVs) would be ‘impactive’ to the license life of a power station,' ....'(power stations) were made to run, not made to be up and down, up and down. The more they run around the clock, the better they are.'"

"A new study for the Department of Energy finds that "off-peak" electricity production and transmission capacity could fuel 84 percent of the country's 220 million vehicles if they were plug-in hybrid electrics."

Or this from the Oak Ridge Labs study:
"when vehicles are plugged in after 10 p.m., when the electric load on the system is at a minimum and the wholesale price for energy is least expensive. Depending on the power demand per household, charging vehicles after 10 p.m. would require, at lower demand levels, no additional power generation or, in higher-demand projections, just eight additional power plants nationwide."

You pick out the smallest estimate which had the caveat of "at least" in front of it and it also said "immediately" and you run with it.

Engineer? Maybe.
Doomer-tard? Still a resounding yes!!

Next!

DoctorJJ

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 2:20:00 PM PDT, Blogger Ari said...

Guys, guys.

It's "doomtard (tm)" Not "doomer-tard." Get it right. Or I'll SUUUEEEEE you like an angry Scientologist.

You've been warned.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 4:31:00 PM PDT, Anonymous jd was rigth said...

The debate is over.

"Which draws more juice from the electric grid, a big-screen plasma television or recharging a plug-in hybrid car?

The answer — a plasma television — is what is easing the minds of utility company executives across the U.S. as they plan for what is likely to be a conversion of much of the country's vehicle fleet from gasoline to electricity in the coming years.

Plasma TVs, industry officials say, consume about four times the electricity as recharging a plug-in hybrid. Yet utilities have managed to cope with the increased loads as thousands of new televisions came on line."

If we can absorb plasmas we can absorb PHEVs and EVs.

http://www.globeauto.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20080723.whElectricCarPlasma0723/GAStory/specialGlobeAuto/home

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 5:09:00 PM PDT, Blogger JD said...

Do you actually own an EV yourself ? NOW ? I mean now ?

No, but I travel by EV constantly, and in fact I'm about to ride one right now. It's called the "subway" or "the train". The city/country where I live is carpeted with them, wall-to-wall.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 5:16:00 PM PDT, Blogger Yogi said...

@ the anonymous doomer who said “Let's imagine that 100 million cars magically converted to EV cars without using a single energy unit or precious metal like lithium.”

Lithium is NOT a precious metal. It’s not even a rare element. My copy of the Merck index gives its average abundance I the earth’s crust at 20ppm. The same source for silver gives 0.1 ppm. And if you’re worried about the depletion of high grade lithium ores this ought to put you’re mind at ease:

http://www.evworld.com/article.cfm?storyid=1434

“As to the issue of American lithium resources, Evans pointed out that a single geothermal well in southern California can produce enough lithium to meet all of the world's current demand for lithium. There are also lithium-bearing clays called Hectorite and oilfield brines that contain commercially-viable concentrations of lithium, though they would be more expensive to produce compared to the high desert brines in the Andes and Tibet.

How much lithium is there in the world in Evan's professional analysis? He estimates it at 28.4 million tonnes of lithium, which is equivalent to 150 million tonnes of lithium carbonate. Current world demand is 16,000 tonnes.”

Yogi.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 9:38:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Pragmatist said...

"No, but I travel by EV constantly, and in fact I'm about to ride one right now. It's called the "subway" or "the train".

I guess it must be JAPAN ? The most energy efficient nation with the 3rd largest oil consumption in the world.

Oil consumption by nation - 2007

Energy in Japan


In 1950 coal supplied half of Japan's energy needs, hydroelectricity one-third, and oil the rest. In 1988 oil provided Japan with 57.3% of energy needs, coal 18.1%, natural gas 10.1%, nuclear power 9.0%, hydroelectic power 4.6%, geothermal power 0.1%, and 1.3% came from other sources. By 2001 the contribution of oil had declined further to 50.2% of the total, with further rises in the use of nuclear power and natural gas.[1]

"Which draws more juice from the electric grid, a big-screen plasma television or recharging a plug-in hybrid car?

Not everyone owns a big screen plasma TV.

Plasma TV sales

Revenue for plasma televisions took a substantial hit in February, according to the latest figures released by the NDP Group on Tuesday, generating only $181 million compared to the nearly $216 million in February 2006.

price of a plasma TV in February was $1,688,

181million / 1688 *12 = 1.3 mil units sold in a single year, and it's in declining mode in favor of LCD. I bet there are no greater than 5mil of BIG SCREEN PLASMA in use.

Also, We are talking about having 220 million of Full EVs (not hybrid ) on the road eventually. So your analysis that the existing power capacity and power grid can withstand the additional 50-70 million of big screen Plasma ( 220 mil 100% EV ) without capacity/grip upgrade is flawed.

 
At Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 10:00:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Pragmatist said...

off-peak" electricity production and transmission capacity could fuel 84 percent of the country's 220 million vehicles if they were plug-in hybrid electrics."

Oh god i thought we're talking about FEC ( Full ELECTRIC CAR ). What about peak hour then ? I'm sure this is a legitimate concern for the energy industry.


Did you miss out the following ? They are already facing difficulty with the construction new coal plants even without million of EVs on the road.

You, Sillytard ....

US on the verge of

At the same time, it is estimated that electricity use will increase 29 percent between 2006 to 2030 — much of it driven by residential growth, according to a government report issued in June.

“I’m really not a ‘Chicken Little’ player, but I worry that no one seems to be focusing in on this,” said Michael Morris, chairman, president and chief executive of American Electric Power, which runs the nation’s largest electricity transmission system.

Morris said massive outages this year in South Africa, which forced gold, diamond and platinum mines to stop production for five days, should serve as a warning to the United States.

Industry experts back Morris and say there is even more resistance to building new plants because of the debate over climate change and opposition to new transmission lines. The blocking of two coal-fired plants in Kansas is one example of the resistance.

“The level of excess capacity has shrunk … to a level barely within the planning toleration of the industry,” said Marc Chupka, with the Brattle Group, an energy consultant.

NEXT!

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 2:47:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Pragmatist said...

Now, let's watch my personal favorite peak oil movie - THE END OF SUBURBIA - 52 mins

It talks about the end of sprawling suburbia, the emergence of new urbanism (whether you like it or not !) and a more localized economy to counter the impending oil shock. It's a thought provoking documentary film deserves the attention of silly cornucopean or boomsters. ENJOY !

Warning : Matt Simmons was on the film.

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 4:03:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Energy Conversationist ( Pragmatist) said...

Oh,BTW, Jd, would you be able to write a lengthy article explaining how the uninventing of sprawling suburbia in United states and the emerging developing worlds like China and India gives the greatest opportunity for MASSIVE MASSIVE energy conservation ?

I really thought you could do a lot better than writing " MOPEDS SAVE SUBURBIA " when it comes to energy conservation.

JD's Electification and conservation

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 4:32:00 AM PDT, Blogger Ari said...

"No, but I travel by EV constantly, and in fact I'm about to ride one right now. It's called the "subway" or "the train".

I guess it must be JAPAN ? The most energy efficient nation with the 3rd largest oil consumption in the world.


Or here, or here, or here, or here, or here, or even here

I can travel almost the entire eastern seaboard and never once use any non-electrified rail.

It talks about the end of sprawling suburbia, the emergence of new urbanism (whether you like it or not !) and a more localized economy to counter the impending oil shock. It's a thought provoking documentary film deserves the attention of silly cornucopean or boomsters. ENJOY !

Here's the thing: I bet that at least a few of us here (myself included) would WELCOME this shift. I tend to believe it's already underway to some degree. So what? This is a red herring, and doesn't really mean much in the context of your current argument.

By the way, do you have any other sources besides the one you keep repeating? Once source from AP is not enough to really say much.

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 5:16:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Pragmatist said...

"I can travel almost the entire eastern seaboard and never once use any non-electrified rail."

That's great, tell that to millions of hummer and SUV driving suburbia folks to begin stuffing their overfed body in the electrified train. Oh wait, there is no train in many parts of the Suburbia. Someone even suggests Mopeds as a solution.

"By the way, do you have any other sources besides the one you keep repeating? Once source from AP is not enough to really say much."

It does provide more than enough information of the current state of energy capacity and power grids. It's coming from the words of president and chief executive of American Electric Power so i think one source is enough. You can always google yourself if you need more sources.

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 7:02:00 AM PDT, Blogger JD said...

Pragmatist,
5 of the last 6 comments are yours. Why don't you shut up and give somebody else a chance to comment.
If you feel the need to blather, please set up your own blog. I generally don't take kindly to spammers like yourself treating my blog as a new beachhead for doomer swill.
JD

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 7:21:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Brother Cadfan said...

That film contains segments by Kunstler, whose hatred of modern society is well known. He is one of a large band of peak oilers who have attached themselves to the cause not because they have concerns about peak oil per se, but that it ticks all their boxes.

Matt Simmons; covered ad naseum.

On the point of localised economies, beware. I am from rural Wales and despite being relatively young I can just about remember these days, and I can assure you that these are not the whimsical constructs the peak oilers like to tell us about. Singing Welsh versions of John Barleycorn in the community yurt it was not. I can remember the days when local shops and farmers used to rip us off, knowing their monopoly was secure and we had no other choice; not to mention them serving us potentially BSE infected meat and radioactive milk. I hate Tesco and don't shop there myself but I must concede it was only with the opening of said company in my home town that many poorer people started eating decent food.

With this said, unlike pragmatist or whatever name is being as the minute, I do not believe it need come to this wholesale destruction of suburbia. Simple fact there are old hat solutions available to us. Electric trains are much better than the diesel equivalent, which has been technologically very static for a long time. And we also know GTL and CTL work, whether you like it or not!

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 7:22:00 AM PDT, Anonymous DoctorJJ said...

"It does provide more than enough information of the current state of energy capacity and power grids. It's coming from the words of president and chief executive of American Electric Power so i think one source is enough. You can always google yourself if you need more sources."

That same dude said the grid could handle an immediate load of 20% of the cars being changed to plug-in hybrids, and he said the electrical industry is "more prepared" than people realize. Over 90% of people's daily driving would be all electric with PHEV's, so we don't have to worry about an all-electric car.

I've also provided other sources, by highly respected researchers, who say that the grid can handle the vast majority of an additional load by plug-in hybrids, including the Department of Energy and Oak Ridge Labs.

Also, what's the difference in the electrical draw of a PHEV vs a full electric car? If 90+% of people's commutes will be all electric in a PHEV, then why would an all electric car pull more from the grid during it's daily recharge? I'll tell you. It will probably pull less, because full electric cars will be more efficient, not having to lug around a fossil-fuel engine and generator.

"I bet there are no greater than 5mil of BIG SCREEN PLASMA in use."

http://www.ce.org/Press/Vision/1520_3132.asp

"By comparison, plasma TV sales are expected to grow to 3.8 million units this year, from 2.8 million last year and 1.7 million in 2005. "

Yes, that's old data, but it still shows that between 2005-2007 (only 3 years) 8 million plasma's were sold in the US. Only 6 million total? Oops!!! I'm sure you'll come back and say "but I was only talking about 'big screen's'" and then give some vague definition about what constitutes a big screen. The fact is, the only plasma's sold are basically big screens as that's the only market they are competitive in, due to the prohibitive price of large LCD's. Also, you can google anything about plasma's and see that they are making a big comeback in the market, and sales have actually increased significantly from the time of my old data presented above and today, oh and BTW the market, overall, is booming. Your story was from 2007. Also, they were talking about February numbers only, so that means that, worldwide, 1.3 million units were sold in February of 2007, not all of the past year.

Also, do you have anything to refute the studies that say the grid can handle 84% switch to PHEV's? Other than to throw out some red herring about full EV's? (When everyone knows the natural progression is to PHEV's and they can handle 90+% of people's daily driving totally on electric anyway)

Or how about something to refute the Oak Ridge study that said with simply timing our charging we may not need any new power plants to feed 100% of the cars on the road?

With you doomers it's all the same. Central to your arguments is the fallacy that the day peak hits, nothing can use a drop of oil from that point forward. You can't seem to follow the idea that, decreasing demand/usage and market mitigation, like a change to PHEV's could cut US consumption by 50%. That's 11 million barrels of oil per day. That can change a decline curve in a huge way. But again, that doesn't make sense to you. When peak hits, unless EVERYONE has gone 100% to other sources of energy then we are all doomed. Yeah, that makes sense. LOL!!!

I can't believe I fell into the old trap of arguing on the internet. It's like they say, arguing on the internet is like running in the Special Olympics. Even if you win, you're still retarded.

DoctorJJ

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 7:23:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Brother Cadfan said...

Sorry JD I didn't get the chance to hit publish until after you made you last comment -

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 7:32:00 AM PDT, Anonymous DoctorJJ said...

More on plasma TV sales.
http://news.cnet.com/8301-1001_3-10021645-92.html

DoctorJJ

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 7:37:00 AM PDT, Anonymous DoctorJJ said...

Have we beaten down Pragmatist enough yet? LOL!

I have a tendency to keep hammering an issue, even after I've proven my point, until I piss off everyone around me. Sorry.

DoctorJJ

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 8:55:00 AM PDT, Blogger Ari said...

That's great, tell that to millions of hummer and SUV driving suburbia folks to begin stuffing their overfed body in the electrified train. Oh wait, there is no train in many parts of the Suburbia. Someone even suggests Mopeds as a solution.

This is an interesting, and rather persistent, somewhat-myth about transit in America. The truth is that most of Suburbia, with the exception of the most far flung parts, actually does have some form of transit available. I used to live in one of the most suburban of all suburbias (San Fernando Valley, CA), and I got around fine without a car.

True, there are really far-flung suburban (exurban, even) developments, but those do seem to be slowing, and maybe even dying.

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 11:37:00 AM PDT, Blogger regeya said...

Wasn't there some coal mine which has been converted to an all electric vehicle fleet?

This is... errmm... words cannot...

Wow.

This is like paying people to polish rocks in a manure pile.


Not really. Would YOU want to work that far underground and have to deal with carbon monoxide on top of dealing with methane?

I know what you're getting at, ari, and I did LOL. :-) Some of the local mines have equipment that use 29,000 lb.(!) batteries. Due to shipping costs, the factory that makes them moved from China to Kentucky.

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 1:54:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let's not forget, more PHEVs and EVs would probably mean a lot less gas stations. gas stations and gas pumps draw power. less of them means less energy. so right off the bat energy is saved. PHEVs and EVs also use hundreds of less parts and less maintenance. that means less parts stores and less mechanic shops. all that means less energy consumed to help offset any increase in power demand.

spread over 50 states 8 more power plants is nothing.

with each PHEV or EV sold if they came with a clothesline or 5 CFLs that would probably help offset any increase in power demand.

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 2:21:00 PM PDT, Blogger Ari said...

regeya,

Oh I agree! I totally see why mining has gone all electric (another doomer fantasy being destroyed, funnily enough). One thing that's bugged me for a long time is the fact that coal mine fires spew more GHGs than most human activities! It's a pity that we ignore this problem, as it's a health and serious environmental problem, instead freaking out about how many CFLs everyone owns.

For the record, I use only CFLs, so yes, my money is where my mouth is.

A 29,000 lb battery boggles the mind. In fact, most large-scale industrial processes boggle the mind.

Let's not forget, more PHEVs and EVs would probably mean a lot less gas stations. gas stations and gas pumps draw power. less of them means less energy. so right off the bat energy is saved. PHEVs and EVs also use hundreds of less parts and less maintenance. that means less parts stores and less mechanic shops. all that means less energy consumed to help offset any increase in power demand.

spread over 50 states 8 more power plants is nothing.

with each PHEV or EV sold if they came with a clothesline or 5 CFLs that would probably help offset any increase in power demand.


5 20 watt CFLs replacing 5 100 watt bulbs= 400 watts/h. That's a pretty big energy savings. Imagine what happens when LED lighting goes full-scale commercial!

I think if you get the big automakers including PVs as a benefit of purchase (instead of some 0% APR or cash-back deal), you'll get a lot of people on the bandwagon.

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 2:54:00 PM PDT, Anonymous DoctorJJ said...

"I think if you get the big automakers including PVs as a benefit of purchase (instead of some 0% APR or cash-back deal), you'll get a lot of people on the bandwagon."

I've thought about that a lot, too. Why not figure out how much electricity the average PHEV or full electric car uses and match a PV array to that car. You could even have legislation that mandates X number of PHEV's must be sold each year, as that technology is already here, and you could also mandate that each one comes with the approriately sized PV array.

Obviously, some people who would buy those cars won't be able to use the array due to space limitations (like people who live in apartments in the city, so they could sell them on eBay or something), but simply making those part of the package deal would put more PV panels on the market and ensure that there is zero net effect from putting vehicles on the grid.

DoctorJJ

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 3:05:00 PM PDT, Blogger Ari said...

doctorjj,

And the upside is that the automakers can probably get these things for a lot less than the consumer would thanks to bulk purchases. That means that what would cost the consumer x costs the automaker x-y_percent. Dunno how much it would save in reality, but I'm sure it would matter on the margin.

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 3:56:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

washing and drying takes up about 5% of our energy needs. most of that energy is spent drying the clothes.

in the mean time the grid is getting smarter. better implementing wind power will help add power.

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 4:22:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Soylent said...

"It's well known in the nuclear field that the commonly used thermal nuke reactors have NO FUTURE."

What a load of honk.

There's an enormous amount of uranium out there at a few hundred dollars per kg and uranium is such a small part of the cost of nuclear power that it can easily be born; even with LWRs.

The LTFR is a molten salt, thermal breeder reactor and it's one of, if not the most promising reactors for long term sustainability, short-lived waste, inherent safety and efficiency(high temperatures are attainable).

"IT HAS TO be FAST NEUTRON reactor with closed fuel cycle. It's gonna take decades to build many of them."

We have easily enough uranium for a century or so with todays LWRs; even if we don't manage to mine sea water.

Fast breeder reactors just never made a whole lot of sense unless you wanted to produce a lot of high quality plutonium.

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 5:36:00 PM PDT, Blogger Richard said...

"Uh huh. Give me a call when you can get one of those toys to go from LA to Chicago, asshat. LOL."

I don't know if that's a real quote or one you made up but either way it's a strikingly real portrayal of a classic doomster! I hate how they all seem to have this smug "I can't believe you don't realise this" attitude and seem to feel it's their duty to prove how worldly they are by pointing out what they regard as inherent flaws in an otherwise optimistic phenomenon.

Great post

 
At Friday, August 29, 2008 at 6:56:00 PM PDT, Blogger Ari said...

soylent,

Thing is, even the lowly CANDU can use natural uranium if need be. It's not really like we're low on fertile or fissile fuel. At all.

I don't get the "peak uranium" BS. It's one of the strangest doomer arguments out there.

Gen IV nukes will blow the pants off of these "running out of fuel' arguments.

 
At Saturday, August 30, 2008 at 3:26:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The GM-Volt, for all of GM's hubris and flaws, looks like an amazing vehicle. 40 miles on a charge, then 50 mpg on the engine."

Alternatively, you could just spend half as much money buying a Civic.

The Volt isn't a bad idea, but it's a joke at it's current price; last estimate I read was around $48,000 plus a few thousand every few years replacing the batteries, and it seems to rise a few thousand every few months. You'd have to be somewhat optimistic to spend all that money in the hope of making up the difference on the cost of gas.

 
At Saturday, August 30, 2008 at 4:41:00 PM PDT, Blogger Ari said...

Anon,

Depends on how much you drive.

Let's assume that you drive 15000 miles a year. At $4/gallon, you spend about $2K a year. Assume you keep the car for 10 years and put 150K miles on it, then you save $20K on gas, assuming gas prices hold constant for 10 years. That seems unlikely. I will not, however, forecast prices and be the next Simmons.

The battery may be where you no longer see a financial benefit. However, if the batteries get cheaper over time (which can be assumed to some degree), the hit from the batteries may not be too much.

 
At Saturday, August 30, 2008 at 7:12:00 PM PDT, Blogger regeya said...

"Hey, oil had a great bull run, nearly epic. But the bull has been gored."

Yeah, and I think some (most) people, even the doomers, are blissfully unaware of what Matt Simmons did for a living.

Yes, folks, he's an investment banker. In the energy industry.

http://www.simmonsco-intl.com/

Not exactly someone I'd count on to be impartial when the energy sector's prices are spiking and he keeps calling for futures to be double whatever they are at the moment. Well, him, and Goldman-Sachs, who has been making that call every time their stock price drops this year.

I'd be curious to know whether or not ol' Matt is long on oil.

Look, I'm not denying peak oil, I'm just denying that Matt Simmons deserves any gratitude. I'm guessing that Matt is as self-serving on oil as Al Gore is on the environment (what, you think he's not making a dime on carbon credits?)

 
At Saturday, August 30, 2008 at 9:51:00 PM PDT, Anonymous benny "peak demand" cole said...

Anon-
Good points, but a couple caveats:
Looks like there will be a federal rebate or subsidy on the Volt, maybe up to 5k, even 7k.
GM is saying $35k sale price, maybe $40k.
The battery looks good for thousands of charges, probably 10 years.
Also, people buy cars for various reasons. If a matter of pure economics, why ever buy a new car? Why does anyone buy a Mercedes or BMW? Cadillac? Sheesh, Escalades sell well.
Surely, the GM Volt is a better buy than a Escalade.
Still, the Volt may be a dud. Peraonlly, I think they are "vamping down" the style, at great peril. No matter in the bigger picture.
The whole industry is migrating to EVs. Nissan is talking about a 200 mile range EV and rapid recharge. The Chinese are planning to bring a EV to market, and they are world leaders in lithium batteries.
That great demand for oil from a booming China? If the EV comes on, forget about it.
And we are talking about in the next several years. The battery part seems to have been whipped.
If gasoline prices rise, the world will move to EVs.
Personally, I look forward to it. Cleaner urban air, quieter streets.
What is not to like? I am waiting for the day I can buy a lithium scooter.

 
At Sunday, August 31, 2008 at 10:55:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"You'd have to be somewhat optimistic to spend all that money in the hope of making up the difference on the cost of gas."

Just as I was about to type someone rode bye on a scooter. funny.

People will have different motivations. some will be in favor of a car that doesn't pollute the environment as much. PHEVs and EVs would significantly improve pollution in many areas. PHEVs and EVs also have lower maintenance costs. their value will probably maintain better.

the cost of the cars and batteries will come down over time.

 
At Tuesday, September 2, 2008 at 7:40:00 AM PDT, Anonymous nick said...

The new electric vehicle's will reduce air pollution. That's important for the future.

 
At Tuesday, September 2, 2008 at 2:31:00 PM PDT, Blogger Skallagrimson said...

The comment that a plasma TV uses more power than charging a plug in hybrid is true only in very limited circumstances.

An example of a plug in hybrid would be a modified prius, with two 4.5KWh batteries, one replacement of the 1.3KWh standard battery, and one auxillary battery.

http://blogs.spectrum.ieee.org/tech_talk/2008/05/hymotion_launches_more_afforda.html

http://tinyurl.com/5dqc6x

9KWh is the equivalent of watching plasma TV for 22 hours (399W), which allows the tiny prius to travel 30 miles, so we are talking about at least 24 hours watching TV, in order to consume as much power as for 1 hour driving.

http://www.plasmadisplaycoalition.org/results/power.php

http://tinyurl.com/5udcke

I am surpriced that the plasma TV argument was taken seriously, are there not people here, that can make a back of an envelope calculation?

 
At Tuesday, September 2, 2008 at 3:27:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I am surpriced that the plasma TV argument was taken seriously, are there not people here, that can make a back of an envelope calculation?"

If your read the article it's the power industry saying they can handle it. why would they lie?

if you read the article part of the reason why cars wouldn't be as bad is both the time they charge and how they charge- smart charging. tv's would put more strain because they are used most often at peak ours while cars can plug in when rates are low and there is excess energy. a tv can't be turned on at the same times a car can because most people are asleep.

 
At Tuesday, September 2, 2008 at 4:48:00 PM PDT, Blogger Skallagrimson said...

"If your read the article it's the power industry saying they can handle it. why would they lie?"

I did read the article, whose 22 commenters were quite critical about, and another point that has not been discussed too much is; how long time would it take, before the night discount disappeared, if lots of plug in hybrids started using the net.

I am personally of the opinion, that economic warfare against Middle Eastern oil countries and Russia is justified, and the key would be to build hundreds of nuclear power plants, and drive the electricity cost down, and substitute non fossil electrical energy for fossil fuels wherever possible, like saving diesel by electrifying the railroads, stop using natural gas for electricity production or home heating, but use it as a substitute for gasoline or diesel instead, for transportation.

I just don't have much respect for people who take journalists at face value, as they typically don't understand the difference between hype and something important. It is true, that there is surplus power at night time, but so what, the scale of things, is that one hour of plasma TV watching might translate to one mile transportation, I can walk faster than that with a 50 pound backpack. A typical automobile drives 12000 miles per year. That translates to 4000 KWh. I use about 1000 KWh per month, or 12000 per year. This would now increase to 16000 KWh/year, or by 33%. In a 2 car household, the increase percentage is likely to be higher. Optimistically, lots of this charging could come from low demand hours, but I think we need lots of new power plants, and I think we should build them.

 
At Tuesday, September 2, 2008 at 6:13:00 PM PDT, Blogger Barba Rija said...

By all means, do build them! Don't know what's all this fuss about. I've shown above that even if you didn't put any of that extra power in the night, you'd need no more power than what was expanded since ten years ago to today. And there was no crash program as well. So, it will stress a bit, it will need a little push in the back to create more power plants than inicially though out, but nothing out of the ordinary as well.

Ain't the future "bright"?

 
At Wednesday, September 3, 2008 at 1:44:00 AM PDT, Blogger DB said...

"Uh huh. Give me a call when you can get one of those toys to go from LA to Chicago, asshat. LOL."

Man what a bullshit red herring.
I love driving as much as the next guy but I have driven distances like that maybe four times in my life. I usually fly now, but I have no problem taking a train.

The real question is this:
Why the hell do I really NEED to take these long distance trips?
Most times I don't.

My buddy drove to and from Raleigh, NC to Portland, OR with his pickup a few weeks back to go get some furniture from his mom's house.

I figure that was an unbelievable waste of gas. I mean, WTF?? why couldn't he just have bought some new furniture locally?

I think most of our so called transportation "problems" are self-inflicted.

Sheesh.

 
At Thursday, September 4, 2008 at 12:50:00 AM PDT, Blogger DB said...

Meanwhile the market delivers yet again:
Fisher Coachworks has just released a plug-in hybrid BUS that more than doubles fuel efficiency from 4mpg to 10mpg.

This looks to me like a reasonable stopgap measure before the implementation of all electric buses, and is even better than my original postulate which was that if Americans all suddenly took the bus it would save 10 million barrels of oil per day, making the US immune to oil shocks.

Smith electric vehicles of the UK currently produces a 15 seater all electric bus with a 200 mile range.

Is it possible, do you think, that we might even have 50 seater standard buses with a 200 mile range within five years?

"Saved by the Bus"
What you have to say to that, doomers?

 
At Thursday, September 4, 2008 at 6:04:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And there's this:
"Paccar and Eaton Corp. said Wednesday that they have agreed to develop proprietary hybrid technology for heavy-duty trucks -- what most people think of as semis. Paccar said it believes it can have the technology available on trucks made by Kenworth (which has a Renton assembly plant) and Peterbilt by the end of 2009."

So if they are capable of producing hybrid (and of course plug-in hybrid) semis then at some point afterwards we'll have fully electric semis.

Oh boo hoo doomers. Looks like the interstates will still be clogged full of traffic in 2050. Just not diesel or gas trucks, semis, SUVs and cars, but electric ones.

Kunstler? Kiss the big L.

 
At Thursday, September 4, 2008 at 8:49:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Frankie said...

I love how all the doomers are so quick to write off electric. What is funny though is that even the Peak Oil Conference which is taking place in a few weeks in California is dedicating something like a half a day to how the electric car is the future. These moronic doomers need to wake up and understand that there are real solutions out there and the gloom and doom bull crap does nothing to help us move forward.

 
At Thursday, September 4, 2008 at 11:20:00 AM PDT, Anonymous benny "peak demand" cole said...

By the way, I think the oil price dump has caused The Oil Drum crowd to lose its marbles.
Yesterday, they had a post from a guy named Nate Hagens to the effect that the misfortunes of a single speculator was contributing to, or perhaps even causing, the ongoing price dump. Okay. But the buying power or many, many speculators, many times larger, did not cause a bubble?
Then today, they have a post to the effect that, gee, natural gas supplies in North America may be way, way larger than we thought, thanks to new technology.
I get the same eerie felling when I hear Republicans cheering unionized labor, as they did during Palin's speech.

 
At Friday, September 5, 2008 at 12:40:00 AM PDT, Anonymous Brother Cadfan said...

I think regardless of what happens to the oil price over the next few weeks, it goes to show that speculation has been a significant component of the oil price. Sensible debate about the role of speculation is somewhat difficult; anyone who tries to raise the issue gets shouted down, often by the very people making a nice pile of money from it, or from finance correspondents in major newspapers, unable to convince themselves the markets aren't being distorted and abused.

 
At Friday, September 5, 2008 at 3:02:00 AM PDT, Blogger Barba Rija said...

"By the way, I think the oil price dump has caused The Oil Drum crowd to lose its marbles."

No kidding. Those guys suffer heavily from schizophrenia. One day they are calling how speculators have nothing to do with this stuff, how gas is fucked up, how oil is going down in flames, how EVs are fucked up, "and don't let me start on EROEI and ELM!!", relocalization and economic global collapse isn't a theory, it's the inevitable conclusion.

Next day? They are all cheered up how speculators have indeed a big part on the scheme of things, how gas is giving "good news", how oil is being ramping up. They are all nicely talking how nuclear and electricity is going to change our lifestyles to the better.

Tomorrow it's all gonna start all over again. It's like these guys haven't any memory at all.


how eroei is just gonna fuck your life up

 
At Friday, September 5, 2008 at 8:31:00 AM PDT, Blogger JD Walters said...

Does anyone here think that we should be worried about the implications of the Export Land Model? It seems to me that whatever 'bite' peak oil has, is in this prospect, viz. that oil exports could drop much more quickly than expected due to rising internal consumption, giving us less time to diversify the energy portfolio.

 
At Friday, September 5, 2008 at 8:54:00 AM PDT, Blogger Ari said...

jdwalters,

The export land model only matters if we assume that oil producing nations find ways to add value to oil beyond selling the stuff. Thing is, oil, as a commodity, is essentially "monopriced." Not selling it to consume it at home is only worthwhile if we assume that it's not cheaper to simply replace your domestic consumption with an alternative source of energy.

I'll use a very simple example.

Let's say country A sells oil on the world market for $100/barrel. Now, let's assume they become an importer one day.

ELM says that that country stops selling the stuff. However, what if country A instead decides to substitute its own oil use with NG use and make a profit selling the oil?

ELM only holds true if the assumptions hold true. And we all know what happens when we assume...

 
At Friday, September 5, 2008 at 3:20:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Brother Cadfan said...

JD Walters,

I think the land exports model is interesting but ignores a number of points, such as the inability of OPEC nations to feed their populace. And my Saudi and Venezuelan friends have elucidated this situation to me. Russia is a different matter. It also ignores that several oil producers do not have sufficient ability to refine their oil.

 
At Friday, September 5, 2008 at 3:21:00 PM PDT, Anonymous Brother Cadfan said...

Just noticed that Ari has covered a few other good points!!

 

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