reply to post by EJHoover
first off, thanx for even replying, EJHoover
the current global warming scare is, afaics, all about buzzwords, not so much about substance, as long as you keep your eye on the alledged goal of
hybrid cars, well they are somewhat overdue, but certainly not in their current shape and form.
today's hybrids have a normal drivetrain plus electric motors plus batteries, which essentially means building two cars in one chassis and engineers
have to finagle their way through development in order to give these cars a familiar 'feel' to them, greatly increasing lead times and cost, of
this cannot be coincidence, since the electric drivetrain is there anyway and purely electric cars have already been demonstrated in the early 1990s,
so the real goal is to milk some cash (the entire industry, not just auto builders, mind you) and want to stay employed, today's engines have to be
quite powerful even though you rarely use their full potential, because there's are no reserves (batteries, capacitors) to dip into for a few seconds
(or half a minute). ditch that requirement, use electric drive combined with a buffer and your car just got lighter and less expensive, but several
people will not sell their huge, complicated and precision-machined mechanical drivetrains! batteries are more often than not toxic, btw and the
recycling/reuse issue should be cleared before hybrids enter large scale use. either that or use capacitors, they are much lighter, too.
the same can be seen in flourescent lamps, they come with rather bulky transformers which would certainly outlast the lamp itself but is firmly
integrated, which means we're tossing perfectly good transformers so someone can get rich off recycling the copper in these coils, while the lamp
industry itself probably derives most of its revenue from selling them.
these solutions are obvious, aren't they? do you find it credible that if only you poured 'serious money' somehwere, things would change? 'serious
money is the ends in this game, everything else beomes the means.
therefore, chances are that Corn ethanol will not be replaced, no matter if food prices soar in the process, it might be supplemented by other sources
but once an industry is established, it will fight tooth&nail to keep their status quo.
PS: the real question is not so much what's used for fuel, but how you do it, if you haul things thousands of miles it's not ecological, centralised
millling isn't either. a village, using its locally available resources with prudence, to fulfill its needs, otoh probably is.