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Response to progree (Reply #23)

Sun Oct 14, 2018, 11:58 AM

25. OK. Everyone should do what they can; clearly you are; but I hope...

...you will understand my frustration at weak efforts in a clearly rising disaster of global proportions.

I do come across as hostile, I'm sure, but frankly, it's just generalized anger because of what I have come to know, and I hope you will understand that it's because of what I've come to understand, and not directed at you personally.

Clearly you care..

If you focus your attention on weak means of addressing this crisis, you are still doing far more than most Americans, especially in the age of Trumpism, and for this you clearly deserve some admiration and respect.

It's not as if I have a realistic approach, in the political or sociological sense, to solving this problem. I'm like a man with small cell lung cancer who's reading about treatments that might be available some day even though he has been declared terminal.

I will confess that 30 years ago, when I first started seriously thinking about issues in the environment by delving into the primary scientific literature, I went through a phase where I actually believed that the world would be wonderful if everyone had an electric car and a solar cell system on their roofs.

Been there. Done that.

It's clear that depending on how one searches the literature, one can still find evidence to believe this, although frankly, the case is less and less defensible.

I recall George H.W. Bush announcing that the "American lifestyle is not negotiable," as if one could negotiate with the atmosphere.

We can't.

(Despite attempts to rehabilitate them, the Bushes are really awful people, considerably worse than even the awful Kennedys)

We're really at a "finger in the dike" moment at, say, the Banqiao dam disaster, which killed according to most sources around 170,000 people, although there are a number of estimates that are considerably higher. (The true death toll will never be known.)


I had a vague feeling that I'd recently come across a "well to wheel" paper, and as kind of a peace offering for my angry tone, here it is:

Current and Future United States Light-Duty Vehicle Pathways: Cradle-to-Grave Lifecycle Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Economic Assessment (Elgowainy et al Environ. Sci. Technol., 2018, 52 (4), pp 23922399.)

I opened the PDF in my files, and looked at it, and it has all this wonderful stuff about if we lived in the solar nirvana and had electric cars, our GHG would be such and such...etc...etc...etc.

(I've been hearing this stuff for so long and with such deepening frustration at how delusional it is, that for me it's pure "Waiting for Godot," but no matter...)

I'm not going to have time today to really go deeply into this paper, open the HTML in a library, put up all the high resolution graphics, and superficially discuss the text as I do here from time to time on other topics. (My sons have both come home from college this weekend and we need to do some business and logistic things. There is a prosaic life beyond these vast issues, "deck chairs on the Titanic" as they sometimes say...)

Maybe I will someday have time. Watch this space if interested in what I have to say on this topic, or feel free to ignore it.

But here is the low resolution graphic that pretty much describes what the thinking of the NREL and other National Lab type people think about the non-negotiable American lifestyle and transport vehicles:

With a quick glance, one can see that if electric cars have some Greenhouse Gas advantages over gasoline based ICEV cars, there are clearly a large number of them, depending on the source of electricity, that are very much in the same range as gasoline cars.

To me this suggests that the enthusiasm for the electric car enterprise as "doing something" - the wild enthusiasm for and worship of that awful fool Elon Musk and his stupid car for billionaires and millionaires - is nearly the equivalent of doing nothing at all.

(Note that the graphic above only refers to vehicles that contain some electrical components, and not to the average gasoline type car that still characterizes the "non-negotiable" American lifestyle, the exception being the ethanol cars for which Jimmy Carter had so much enthusiasm almost half a century ago, this at the ultimate cost of the destruction of large tracts of the Mississippi Delta ecosystem.)

Thanks for your comments. I actually appreciate them.

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Submariner Oct 2018 OP
RockRaven Oct 2018 #1
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Wyatt513 Oct 2018 #3
progree Oct 2018 #4
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uppityperson Oct 2018 #6
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Brother Buzz Oct 2018 #8
progree Oct 2018 #9
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uppityperson Oct 2018 #11
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mahina Oct 2018 #29
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MichMan Oct 2018 #27
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progree Oct 2018 #18
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progree Oct 2018 #21
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progree Oct 2018 #23
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NeoGreen Oct 2018 #20
tinrobot Oct 2018 #31
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Finishline42 Oct 2018 #34
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MichMan Oct 2018 #28
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