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Old 03-14-2013, 08:01 AM   #21 (permalink)
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The price of oil is subject to demand. EV's reduce that demand and thereby running costs for non-EV's.
Oil is mostly imported, so reducing both quantity and price will have a big effect on the import/export balance. Powerstations usually use local sources.
Who do you like to spend your money on?

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It always takes longer than you expect, even when you take into account Hofstadter's Law.
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Old 03-14-2013, 08:05 AM   #22 (permalink)
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The Tesla S may be a flash in the pan, or it may be the signpost showing industry the way forward. But there can be no doubt that it is a brilliant accomplishment and a tremendous piece of automotive engineering and art. I for one have no problems with a couple of my tax dollars going into its creation; in fact I feel a good bit of pride in it, and in the fact that Tesla is a US company. We need more like it.

The problem will be that, should we actually ever stop whining and get back to work in this country, we'll have to very quickly remember the ratio between startup successes and failures. I used to work in R&D and I now work in a highly competitive segment of the communications industry. I can tell you from experience that there are a lot more failures than successes.

In my opinion the federal government should subsidize industries that aren't quite there yet, or that hold great promise but do not attract sufficient private investment to get them moving. If the feds didn't back some losers I'd be astonished. If/when electric cars become ubiquitous, and they all come from, say, Brazil, how many people do you think would be moaning about "the US falling behind once more"?

I'd be okay with the Tesla S being so successful that it spawns a host of would-be imitators. I'd be fine with one of them building a more affordable 200 mile all-electric car. I would not mind seeing my tax dollars go to Wawa (a local convenience store chain) to give them incentive to put in charging stations. In 10 years I could be driving gasoline powered cars just in parades on holidays. That would be fine with me.
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Old 03-14-2013, 02:45 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Frank Lee View Post
I don't bat an eye at electric subsidy because oil and others have had so much subsidy for so long, the playing field is not even close to being level.
You are right about the playing field not even being close to level, but wrong about which field has historically been favored.

Electrification in the US began in the 1880s, a good 2 decades before the Ford Model T. The first automobiles were electric. The US had many electrification projects and subsidies to grow power production and distribution.

How many people have a gasoline pump at their house? Nearly everyone has an electric outlet.

Electric vehicles have had every opportunity to be the dominant transportation choice in the US, but they simply could not compete with the energy density of petroleum. They still cannot compete with the energy density of petroleum.

Who wants to pay twice as much for a vehicle that travels 1/5 as far and cannot be fueled up in 5min? I do, but I'm a minority, and a multiple vehicle owner.

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Originally Posted by wdb View Post
I for one have no problems with a couple of my tax dollars going into its creation; in fact I feel a good bit of pride in it, and in the fact that Tesla is a US company. We need more like it.
Wonderful! You can subsidize any company you want with your own money and convince whomever you like to do the same with their own money. That is called venture capitalism. People and groups do this voluntarily all the time, and they often make a lot of money.

If a person forced me to be a venture capitalist with no direct ownership in a company that would be criminal. For a government to force me to be a venture capitalist with no personal benefit from success is tyrannical.

The government should have no business in venture capitalism because politicians don't have the motivation or expertise to make efficient decisions about how best to allocate R&D funds.

The logic just does not follow. If government is the best way to develop a technology, then they should be called upon to develop the next iPad, or make my TV screen thinner and larger.

Incentives to develop alternative fuels and vehicles already exists because consumers demand better, faster, cheaper, longer, greener.

Quote:
In my opinion the federal government should subsidize industries that aren't quite there yet, or that hold great promise but do not attract sufficient private investment to get them moving.
The government should subsidize very few things. Nearly everything the government touches becomes a colossal mess. Why do college tuition rates far exceed inflation? It's because the government subsidizes "education" and now everyone can and must go to college to obtain even menial jobs requiring no particular specialization.

Why are food prices skyrocketing? The government subsidizes farming, and in particular corn crops. If we weren't forced to burn 10% ethanol in our vehicles the crops could be used to feed people.

A case for subsidy might hold up for really big projects, such as the development of fusion power. There may be a place for government in the sciences, but certainly not in industry and the marketplace. It really cannot help in those areas, and it's unfair.
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Old 03-14-2013, 04:08 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Why are food prices skyrocketing? The government subsidizes farming, and in particular corn crops. If we weren't forced to burn 10% ethanol in our vehicles the crops could be used to feed people.
Come ON! Hasn't this been gone over again and again and again...?
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Old 03-14-2013, 04:22 PM   #25 (permalink)
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The Surprising Reason That Oil Subsidies Persist: Even Liberals Love Them - Forbes

Supprising at what counts as a "oil company subsidy" when one wants to throw arround numbers.


from Energy subsidies - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Quote:
In the United States, the federal government has paid US$74 billion for energy subsidies to support R&D for nuclear power ($50 billion) and fossil fuels ($24 billion) from 1973 to 2003. During this same timeframe, renewable energy technologies and energy efficiency received a total of US$26 billion. It has been suggested that a subsidy shift would help to level the playing field and support growing energy sectors, namely solar power, wind power, and biofuels.[8] However, many of the "subsidies" available to the oil and gas industries are general business opportunity credits, available to all US businesses (particularly, the foreign tax credit mentioned above). The value of industry-specific subsidies in 2006 was estimated by the Texas State Comptroller to be just $3.06 billion - a fraction of the amount claimed by the Environmental Law Institute.[9] The balance of federal subsides, which the comptroller valued at $7.4 billion, came from shared credits and deductions, and oil defense (spending on the SPR, energy infrastructure security, etc.).
I highlited an important part. I wonder what some of those numbers would look like if they were from 1990 to present?
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Old 03-14-2013, 05:56 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Looking back at the posts you can see a clear distinction between the pro and con posters based on what they drive.
No blame here, cannot expect anyone to preach outside their own church. Like companys we fend our own demands. Nobody's unbiased though.

My stand: I am pro electric but I won't drive an electric car.
Even though the range is ten times better than a century ago, it still falls back to a gas driven car. It should be no problem as I can charge it every night at home or wherever I go. That's not my reason.
The ride quality is superior and fuel price is too, certainly not my reason to not go electric. I'd love that. Just like its reliability; basically it is so much simpler than an ICE.

I simply cannot afford an electric car (*)
The Nissan Leaf and the Mitsubishi i-Miev are basically subcompact cars, but they are at least twice as expensive as comparable cars with an ICE. I cannot make up for the difference even if electricity were entirely free. As I expect the batterys to expire before I'd driven the same distance that I could on the ICE comparison on the fuel I could buy for the price difference.

So with pain in my heart I have to keep burning gas until the batteries used in EV's get twice as cheap, twice as powerful or twice as long-lived.
The break even point is nearly there. It just isn't yet, or it needs to be subsidized even more than it is today. I don't mind those subsidies; it prevents sending money abroad for oil. And it sure is cleaner; I'm convinced of that even more than before by comparing all the data above.
But I have a mortgage to deal with, growing kids etc.
Scientists and lobbyists and sensation-seeking journalists can argue whatever they want. Wallet wise EVs still are wallet unwise. You need a green heart and a lot of green paper to run them.

I ecomod my car and driving habits and save money instead of spending it.
Driving less and doing so more economically benefits the environment beyond any doubt.

(*) Oh I'd love to aquire a disused forklift or such and experiment away with it in all my free time. If I had that.

While I wrote this the telly aired another Nissan Leaf commercial. Maybe that's the clue. It is cheap to make, but the ads add up. If only they could skip those and make it cheap, and less than plain bone ugly...?
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It always takes longer than you expect, even when you take into account Hofstadter's Law.

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Old 03-14-2013, 08:06 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedDevil View Post
The break even point is nearly there. It just isn't yet, or it needs to be subsidized even more than it is today. I don't mind those subsidies
It is very easy to be generous with others money, isn't it? Everyone that "doesn't mind" forking over their own money to subsidize something is free to do so. Is there any reasonable objection to my argument?
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Old 03-14-2013, 08:26 PM   #28 (permalink)
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It is very easy to be generous with others money, isn't it? Everyone that "doesn't mind" forking over their own money to subsidize something is free to do so. Is there any reasonable objection to my argument?
Please don't half-quote, killing the point I make. To elaborate the obvious: Money spent in subsidies on locally produced energy gets in the local economy and is not wasted but put to good use.
You can only make it in the eco market by investing your own money. Subsidies are just additional.

And hey, I pay tax. Lots of it. 21% VAT on anything I buy. 40% additional tax (or abouts) on gas; see my post footer. Over 30% income tax, road tax, insurance tax, home ownership tax, water management tax, something I forgot about tax, you name it. It is my money too. And my planet.
Would you forbid me to say I do not mind subsidies are being given for environmental friendly technology? On this forum?
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It always takes longer than you expect, even when you take into account Hofstadter's Law.

Last edited by RedDevil; 03-15-2013 at 06:16 AM..
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Old 03-14-2013, 09:14 PM   #29 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redpoint5 View Post
Why are food prices skyrocketing? The government subsidizes farming, and in particular corn crops. If we weren't forced to burn 10% ethanol in our vehicles the crops could be used to feed people.
I'm not unfavorable to biofuels, but instead of corn-based ethanol, why not to use agricultural residues instead?
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Old 03-14-2013, 11:52 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Mr. Lomborg's article is not standing up to scrutiny:

Wall Street Journal Op-Ed: Electric Cars Dirtier than Gas Cars | PluginCars.com

Electric cars are cleaner than any other energy source, and they can get cleaner and cleaner over time.

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