Category Archives: Automobiles

If we really cared about CO2, we’d reduce car size and weight, not make electric cars

Preface. Since my book “When trucks stop running: Energy and the future of transportation makes the case that it’s trucks that need to be electrified to keep civilization going, since biofuels don’t scale up, natural gas and liquefied coal are … Continue reading

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Notes from “The Powerhouse: Inside the Invention of a Battery to Save the World” by Steve LeVine

[ My notes from 2015 “The Powerhouse: Inside the Invention of a Battery to Save the World” by Steve LeVine follow this introduction. I read this book because I’ve done extensive research on batteries and was surprised by all the … Continue reading

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Natural gas is a stupid transportation fuel

[ My comment: The only reason natural gas has come up as a transportation fuel at all is the false belief that there is 100 years of natural gas (even this article does, but natural gas may last far less … Continue reading

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What is most energy efficient mass transit mode: bus, rail, or auto?

Before I get started on which of these transportation modes is better, consider how much lightweighting buses, locomotives, (and trucks) would save on energy.  I can’t find similar figures for trucks and locomotives, but the next 2 slides about autos … Continue reading

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Who Killed the Electric Car and more importantly, the Electric Truck?

Preface. Who cares about electric cars?  Civilization ends when trucks stop running, and trucks can’t run on batteries because they’re too heavy (93% of the cargo weight, 25% of the cargo space), and an all-electric truck fleet would require thousands … Continue reading

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Reduce vehicle fuel consumption to increase energy security

[This is a really interesting House session that discusses U.S. energy policy, the need for consumers to be educated about why they should buy more fuel efficient cars, and push-back from the auto industry (see the full 140 pages for … Continue reading

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David L. Greene, ORNL: Raise cafe standards and gas tax

Excerpt from: U.S. House. February 9, 2005. Improving the nation’s energy security: can cars and trucks be made more fuel efficient? Committee on science, House of Representatives, Serial No. 109-3. 140 pages. DAVID L. GREENE, OAK RIDGE NATIONAL LABORATORY, CENTER … Continue reading

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CAFE standards: 54.5 mpg cars exist, but public prefers gas-guzzling SUVs and trucks

[Passenger vehicles sold in 2025 in the United States are supposed to get 54.5 miles per gallon on average.  But they won’t.  It will be closer to 35.4 miles per gallon, as the Union of Concerned Scientists explains in Translating … Continue reading

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How much energy does it take to make a car? by David Fridley, LBL

David Fridley. August 25, 2009.  Embodied and operational energy of vehicles.  I read an article today by Xiaoyu Yan titled Energy demand and greenhouse gas emissions during the production of a passenger car in China in journal Energy Conversion and … Continue reading

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Electric vehicle overview

[ Most, but not all of what follows comes from the NPC paper below. I’ve reworded or interjected some comments as well. As you can see in Figure 1 below, light cars and trucks are the main guzzlers of petroleum.  … Continue reading

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