By on October 26, 2018

2017 Chevrolet Bolt - Image: Chevrolet

General Motors CEO Mary Barra took to the USA Today op-ed page Friday to advocate for a national zero-emission vehicle strategy — NZEV, for short. The automaker is calling for the ZEV program already in effect in California and nine other states to become law across the United States, thus making it mandatory for OEMs to field a certain number of electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles, or pay a price.

Were the proposal to became the law of the land, you can only imagine the reaction from Ford’s rival in Auburn Hills.

GM revealed its wish in comments filed to the Safer Affordable Fuel-Efficient (SAFE) Vehicles Rule for Model Years 2021-2026 for Passenger Cars and Light Trucks, a proposal put forward by the Environmental Protection Agency and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The proposal would dial back existing corporate fuel economy standards, while stripping California of its ability to set its own fuel efficiency rules.

“General Motors anticipates the NZEV program, as recommended, has the potential to place more than 7 million long-range EVs on the road by 2030, yielding a cumulative incremental reduction of 375 million tons of CO2 emissions between 2021 and 2030 over the existing ZEV program,” the automaker wrote.

GM’s vision would be patterned on California’s ZEV rules, which assigns automakers a number of ZEV credits based on a percentage of non-ZEV vehicles sold. The automaker must then sell a number of ZEV vehicles matching the tally of credits, though it’s not a one-for-one ratio of credits to cars. Battery electric vehicles can warrant up to several credits apiece, depending on range, while plug-in hybrids count for anywhere from 1.3 credits to 0.4. Right now, the credit requirement is 4.5 percent, meaning an OEM’s sales volume would need to contain roughly 2.5 percent ZEVs. The rule goes up to 22 percent in 2025, or about an 8 percent ZEV sales mix.

The automaker’s proposal would have the national credit requirement start at 7 percent in 2021, “increasing 2 percent each year to 15 percent by 2025, then 25 percent by 2030.”

Automakers without many green vehicles would be able, as they do now in ZEV states, to purchase credits from automakers who’ve banked their excess credits. OEMs can also trade credits amongst each other. GM’s proposal would see the program terminated after meeting the 25 percent target, or if it was determined that battery cost or recharging infrastructure wasn’t sufficient to make the target feasible. That would give GM and other automakers an out.

Interestingly, the GM proposal also requests “Additional consideration for EVs deployed as autonomous vehicles and in rideshare programs.”

If this proposal seems to align well with GM’s electric car and autonomous vehicle plans, you’re not the only one noticing. That said, the government doesn’t have any requirement to make GM’s wishes come true.

“We believe in a policy approach that better promotes U.S. innovation and starts a much-needed national discussion on electric vehicle development and deployment in this country,” said GM executive vice president Mark Reuss in a statement. “A National Zero Emissions Program will drive the scale and infrastructure investments needed to allow the U.S. to lead the way to a zero emissions future.”

In her op-ed, Barra spoke of the need to mitigate the environmental impact of cars and congestion, saying the U.S. “can lead this transformation, particularly in electric and self-driving vehicles, but it requires collaboration by the private and public sectors, supported by comprehensive federal policies.”

Barra then proposed a series of initiatives designed to ensure the NZEV program’s success. Among them, infrastructure investments to help build a charging network, plus a renewal of the federal EV tax credit program. There was catnip, too. Barra said she would want to see “regulatory incentives” supporting American battery suppliers, then signed off with a warning about European companies turning domestic ones into uncompetitive technological laggards. Jobs, jobs, jobs, her writing whispered.

[Image: General Motors]

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68 Comments on “Going Coastal: GM Calls for Nationwide Zero-emission Vehicle Strategy...”


  • avatar

    we don’t want interference in the market. cash for clunkers was disruptive enough.

    leave us alone for the love of Adam Smith.

    • 0 avatar
      Luke42

      For those who don’t know who Adam Smith was, here’s a nice summary:
      http://www.supersummary.com/the-wealth-of-nations/summary/
      https://www.investopedia.com/updates/adam-smith-wealth-of-nations/

      He was arguing against mercantilism: the idea that one nation must become poorer for another nation to become wealthy, and the resulting government policy. His cure was free trade and economically open borders.

      Based on their respective public statements, Trump is a mercantilist (he believes another country must lose wealth in order for the United States to gain wealth), while Adam Smith was basically a free-trade libertarian who believed trade benefits the participants.

      But, even Adam Smith himself admitted that market failures happen, and that government had a role to play in an economic system. He just thought a limited role for government was optimal, and that the spoiled children of hereditary nobleman who inhabited the government in his time were pretty clueless.

      While I find that Adam Smith’s work is just one of many pillars of modern economics (along with the likes of John Maynard Kaynes), he has many lessons to teach us today. I never thought I’d see mercantilism taken seriously in America in my lifetime, and I’m sure Smith would have a lot of insightful things to say about it.

      // Armchair economist

      P.S. As long as I’m reanimating dead economists, I’d really love to see Zombie Adam Smith debate Zombie John Maynard Kaynes! After they’ve had a chance to catch up on the present, at least.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    My its expensive to be poor in Amerika.

    How about some economic charts about stagnant wages vs pricing of your products Mrs. Barra?

  • avatar
    stuki

    Government Motors all right. Why build decent product for decent prices, when having the Junta mandate people buying your overpriced junk is so much more progressive?

    • 0 avatar
      Luke42

      Go drive an EV, and tell me which car is better.

      Then ask yourself: in a world where EVs and gasoline vehicles had equal infrastructure and economies of scale, which one would be better?

      I’ve asked myself those questions, and I find that I prefer an EV (with home charging overnight and Tesla Supercharger-style fast charging).

      You can keep your explosion-engine Rube Goldberg rattletrap, if you like.

      • 0 avatar
        stuki

        But you wonldn’t necessarily prefer an EV, if you had to pay $5000 extra to buy one, just so I could get a $5000 discount on an explosion engine. Nor, if you had to sit in traffic in your EV, while I got special lanes for the explosion care….

        People have differing preferences. Laws mandating orange farmers sell 2 apples for every orange, are just silly, childish and unproductive.

  • avatar
    pdog_phatpat

    “monthly Ford recalls”
    Uh huh, okay. LOL

  • avatar
    IBx1

    yeahno

    what if I told you EVs don’t sell *yet* because they are still too expensive and limited for widespread adoption

    • 0 avatar
      brandloyalty

      Had you proposed 50 years ago that today’s pickups be the mandated vehicle, you’d have been run out of town.

      • 0 avatar
        Hummer

        I don’t think it’s exactly a good comparison to say pickups, it was government meddling that made the pickup popular after we lost our full size BOF, RWD, V8 cars to CAFE.

        • 0 avatar
          brandloyalty

          True. But pickups didn’t have to grow to the size of houses.

          • 0 avatar
            stingray65

            Do you think that anyone is forced to buy a pickup the size of a house? If the top selling pickup was Colorado sized or smaller with a small 4 cylinder motor, don’t you think that all the automakers would be shifting down in size to satisfy market demands? I personally think full-size pickups are grotesque in size, but they sell like crazy and make huge profits – the market has spoken and ignoring it will get your shareholders angry and greatly hasten the end of your managerial career.

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            Section 179 of the IRS tax code made pickup trucks grow to the size of houses. There should be a lesson in that for big government serfs, but there never is.

          • 0 avatar
            Luke42

            Owning pickup trucks (and guns) also became a cultural statement in America.

            I watched it happen as I grew up in the rural south the 1980s and 1990s.

            If you want to prove you belong in Rural America, a pickup truck is required equipment. And bigger is better. My relatives back home look at me funny when I show up at family gatherings in my regular car.

            The tax code loophole was mostly corrected a decade ago. I was looking at it was a way to reduce the monthly expenditures for a Tesla Model X (which weighs as much as an F-150 and therefore qualifies for the tax break), but setting up the car to be owned by my consulting business didn’t make a difference in cost for my intended use (by design).

            Regardless.ofmhe tax break, my relatives back in Rural America still look at me funny for not driving the biggest BOF vehicle I can afford — the fact that they don’t get it is their problem, not my problem.

  • avatar
    R Henry

    Symantics!

    There is no such thing as a truly “zero emission vehicle” available on the market today.

    Electric car emissions are generated at the power plant. Even hydrogen fuel, required for the Clarity, requires large emission generating energy inputs to produce.

    My all time favorite synthetic faux-term is PZEV–“partial zero emission vehicle” Uhm…is ZERO…or Partially emission free…it can’t be both!!!

    • 0 avatar
      NormSV650

      I get a good laugh when I see PZEV on the back of Subaru’s!

    • 0 avatar
      MBella

      The idea with PZEV is that it’s a plug in hybrid that can be all electric some of the time. I don’t know how Subaru gets away with the label without such a vehicle.

      As for the emissions at the power plant, it’s true mostly that the emissions are just diverted to a different area. When you take into account an area like southern California, it makes sense to divert those emissions somewhere else. What gets me the most,via when so-called eco crusaders will protest to decommission a hydroelectric damn because of a salmon run. You can’t win with some of these extremists.

      • 0 avatar
        ToddAtlasF1

        You’re mixing up terms. a PZEV is just a “super ultra” low emission vehicle configured to have no measurable evaporative emissions. Pro tip? Never own one off of warranty. Look at how much it costs to replace a Ford Focus PZEV’s air filter for a clue.

        • 0 avatar
          MBella

          That’s what it’s become in practice, but PZEV is supposed to stand for partial zero emissions vehicle. After reading a bit into it, it seems somewhere, as long as it has no evaporative emissions, it can be considered partially zero emissions. That’s where your fancy air filter comes in.

        • 0 avatar
          Scoutdude

          The Focus PZEV’s air filter never needs replacement. They did that on the early Fusion Hybrid as well and I put 150k on one and never had to replace it and if my wife hadn’t totaled it we would probably still have it with over 200k and no air filter replacement.

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            It might be a matter of climate or flora, but here in central Virginia they need replacement at less than a third of that mileage. The CEL comes on when they fill up with pollen. The local Ford dealer knew all about Focus PZEV air filter replacement, and the number of aftermarket bodges offered suggest that it isn’t just a problem here.

      • 0 avatar
        IBx1

        PZEV in Subaru’s case is about their factory being run on 100% renewable energy and recycling all waste, etc.

    • 0 avatar
      Luke42

      If.you follow the numbers, emissions for an EV are about the same as a Prius in a region with a carbon-hesby grid, but with a couple of important benefits:

      1) NIMBY for both fuel handling and emissions

      2) Power plants are diligently maintained by professionals who (in my experience) manage their emissions by the book. My car is maintained by me, and sometimes I let things slide for one reason or another.

      3) The fuel source can change from oil to coal to nuclear to hydro to solar/wind without my having to buy a new car every time. In real life, an EV runs off of all of the above, with the mix varrying depending on your region.

      • 0 avatar
        Luke42

        This is a nice summary (Sankey Diagram) of energy usage in the USA, including the electric power grid:
        https://flowcharts.llnl.gov

        It’s not very detailed, but it provides vital context for anyone who wants to talk about EVs and their emissions. It’s also pretty easy to digest.

  • avatar
    pdog_phatpat

    Wait, isnt this the company that KILLED the electric vehicle?

    GM. What a joke!

    • 0 avatar
      rpn453

      No, they’re the only ones to waste a bunch of resources making electric vehicles at that time. Everybody else already knew it wasn’t feasible.

      • 0 avatar
        Luke42

        EVs are very feasible.

        Just ask a Tesla owner. Most say they’ll never go back to an ICE car.

        The 500k reservations Tesla had for the Model 3 shows that there is tremendous unsatiated demand for this kind of vehicle.

        • 0 avatar
          jalop1991

          “The 500k reservations Tesla had for the Model 3 shows that there is tremendous unsatiated demand for this kind of vehicle.”

          No, the 500k reservations Tesla had for the Model 3 shows nothing more than the fact that marketing works, plus the fact that people are lemmings who do things for no reason other than to join the crowd–no matter what the crowd is doing.

          • 0 avatar
            mcs

            “nothing more than the fact that marketing works,”

            Tesla has marketing. Was there a superbowl ad that I somehow missed? Was I mishearing those “Built Ford Tough” ads that are actually saying “Built Model 3 Tough”? I thought those real people ads were from Chevrolet. Damn, you’re telling me those are actually Tesla ads? Maybe they are since they make me not want a Chevrolet. Teen driver technology? Is that what they’re calling fully reclining seats these days?

            “plus the fact that people are lemmings who do things for no reason other than to join the crowd–no matter what the crowd is doing”

            Can’t argue that theory. I know there are plenty of people that couldn’t go to an EV even if they wanted too, but your theory does explain a certain segment of the ICE community.

          • 0 avatar
            Luke42

            Tesla markets their cars.

            Tesla does not advertise their cars.

            Marketing ≠ advertising

            Even if jalop1991 were correct that it’s due to Tesla’s marketing efforts, how come other carmakers don’t have half a million people lining up for their vehicles years before they’re introduced?

            Tesla is doing something right.

            Their cars work.

            Their marketing works.

            I want one.

            My personal reasons have more to do with wanting to live in a clean green sci-fi future than with the majority of the $#!t that Elon Musk says. I got bored with gasoline cars around Y2K; they’re a solved problem, but unnecessary complex under the hood compared to an EV. EVs are actually an improvmement in all but the nichiest niches, they’re very nice to drive, and I wonder why I’m not driving one every time my 5AT makes a rough shift.

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            It is worth noting that a meaningful percentage of those 500,000 orders were placed for hypothetical inexpensive Model 3s that Tesla can’t afford to make and that there are no longer giant subsidies to sell, although it really shouldn’t be necessary to point this out to people who act like Tesla has filled the void in their otherwise meaningless lives.

  • avatar
    Jerome10

    Im with buickman.

    Instead of GM spending this money and then trying to jam the costs down the throats of the other 40 states, maybe GM should have told those crazy ten to pound sand.

    Sorry, regulatory capture isn’t how America is supposed to work.

    Barra can f off on this one.

  • avatar
    jfb43

    Every time a company calls for massive regulation, it means two things: it will be a windfall for them and it will stifle competition. This is just another way to make it nearly impossible for smaller manufacturers to compete in the US auto market. Mazda, Subaru, Mitsubishi, and Volvo (maybe) would likely pull out leaving more for the behemoths.

  • avatar
    Hummer

    Barra is an activist, GM needs a CEO. Her tenure has been an unmitigated disaster from the beginning.

    • 0 avatar
      Erikstrawn

      No, the previous two CEOs were unmitigated disasters. Barra is a disaster of a lesser degree, and probably the best GM could hope for with the insane dealership culture that drives them.

  • avatar
    Oberkanone

    A market based approach with freedom of choice serves everyone.
    No policy is great government.

  • avatar
    HotPotato

    A couple of things stand out to me, if I’m reading this proposal right.

    One is that it offers additional credit for long-range vehicles and taxi/rideshare vehicles. That is very sensible. California’s current rules have gotten people to buy EVs, but not to drive them very many miles. That’s because the choices have been limited to short-range compliance EVs that CAN’T go very many miles at a time before running out of juice, or status-symbol long-range luxury cars priced within the reach of a doctor commuting to work but not within the reach of a black-car owner/operator. (The only real exception to that rule so far has been the Bolt, and it’s pretty new.) If your concern is C02 emissions, and a taxi drives 70k miles a year whereas a typical EV now might go 70k mi in 7 years, then you get a lot more C02 reduction sooner by electrifying every taxi, Uber and Lyft in sight, rather than focusing on private owners. Suddenly GM’s Bolt–an affordable, long-range, roomy car with a durable plastic interior and an oddly narrow shape built more for slicing through traffic than accommodating fat behinds in the driver’s seat–makes total sense. As do GM’s ownership of the Maven platform that rents it out to rideshare drivers, and its investment in the Lyft platform that promotes it to owner/operators.

    Second, if you ease up on MPG requirements while doubling down on EV percentages, you make it possible to continue serving up the heavy duty work trucks some buyers actually need to earn a living, as well as goofy overpriced leather-lined SUV versions of them that GM needs to earn profits. The consumer gets to buy what he wants or needs, the automaker gets to make enough dough to pay to develop the EVs down at the sensible-car end of the scale, and the crappy profits on them can’t be any worse than the crappy profits on the Sonics and Cruzes they’d just as soon stop building.

    What about the lower end of the market if electrifying cheap sedans and CUVs pushes their price into entry-luxury pricing territory? Easy: the entry-level model is the used model. Imagine those droves of three-year-old Bolts coming in off lease or off Maven duty–replace the pukey seat covers and the odd busted suspension bits and you’ve got a sensible certified used car with low running costs.

    This plan could actually work. Cynics will say GM doesn’t really want it because they wouldn’t have pushed for the rollback to a 50-state standard first, or because they know Trump won’t go for any green proposals. But they’ve got a pretty significant investment in EV technology, if only to stay relevant in China, and they probably want to make hay with it in as many markets as they can.

    • 0 avatar
      brandloyalty

      Makes a lot of sense to me. Another measure would be to shift the more inefficient used ICE cars towards those who drive less. (Hellcats for seniors!)

      It would be interesting to know how much carbon emissions have been saved by the Escape Hybrid and Prius taxis over the years. Probably a lot, and did anyone suffer?

    • 0 avatar
      George B

      HotPotato, why burn natural gas to make electricity to charge an electric taxi instead of using natural gas directly to fuel the taxi? Seem to me that electric vehicles are poorly suited to applications where the vehicle wouldn’t be normally sitting around for hours between short range usage. Compressed natural gas tanks can be refueled rapidly while battery packs require slow charging if you want them to last for many charge-discharge cycles. It’s also relatively economical to build natural gas refueling stations near the specific locations with lots of taxi cabs.

      • 0 avatar
        mcs

        @georgeB: “applications where the vehicle wouldn’t be normally sitting around for hours”

        It doesn’t take hours to recharge an EV. Especially with the newer high power 300+ kW charging technology. You can put 250 miles of range into a Taycan in 15 minutes. For a taxi application, you could build a specialized taxi with dual charging ports where you get the charge time even lower. Tesla is currently using multiple ports for the semis that they are testing. Instead of a single large pack, you build the vehicle with two smaller packs with a switch to separate them and charge them separately from two separate chargers.

        The big advantage of electric over natural gas is that the vehicle is less complex and easier to maintain. Ask Tesloop:

        https://www.tesloop.com/blog/2017/8/30/tesla-model-s-hits-300k-miles-with-less-than-11k-maintenance-costs

        • 0 avatar
          MBella

          If you do that 15 minute charge frequently, your battery will degrade at an exponential rate. Even your Porsche example confirms that.

          https://cleantechnica.com/2017/07/09/tesla-limiting-supercharging-rates-frequent-users/

          ” Cleantech News — Solar, Wind, EV News (#1 Source) | CleanTechnica logo
          09:39AM

          77 6′
          Why Tesla Is Limiting Supercharging Rates On Some Frequent Users
          July 9th, 2017 by Guest Contributor

          Originally published on EV Annex.

          By Charles Morris

          Tesla recently caused a fuss with its decision to limit the Supercharging rate for vehicles that have racked up numerous DC fast-charging events. A similar stir erupted a few months ago when the company used an over-the-air update to limit the use of Launch Mode (in response to owner outcry, Tesla later removed the software limitation). In both of these cases, however, the company is not trying to spoil anyone’s fun — on the contrary, its goal in controlling Supercharger speed is “to ensure that our customers have the best experience at Superchargers and preserve as much vehicle range as possible.”

          Above: Tesla Model X at Supercharger (via Instagram, teslaventures)

          Fast charging stresses a battery, and doing it too often or at too high a rate can shorten a battery’s useful life. Tesla explained in a statement: ‘The peak charging rate possible in a Li-ion cell will slightly decline after a very large number of high-rate charging sessions. This is due to physical and chemical changes inside of the cells. Our fast-charge control technology is designed to keep the battery safe and to preserve the maximum amount of cell capacity (range capability) in all conditions. To maintain safety and retain maximum range, we need to slow down the charge rate when the cells are too cold, when the state of charge is nearly full, and also when the conditions of the cell change gradually with age and usage.’”

          This is from an eco blog that supports electric cars and quotes Tesla.

          • 0 avatar
            Luke42

            Again, the Tesloop story here is illustrative.

            They abuse the hell out of their batteries through daily fast-charging, and still get more miles out of them than the critics think EV owners will get out of a gently used battery.

        • 0 avatar
          jalop1991

          OK, mcs, let’s look at that article you reference. For example:

          “During the first 300,000 miles the total combined maintenance and fuel costs of the Tesla Model S were $10,492, with a total of 12 days in the shop. Of these costs, $6,900 was scheduled maintenance and $3500 was headlight damage due to driving through deep water. Had this been an Mercedes S class, the scheduled routine maintenance and fuel would have been $86,000 ($52,000 maintenance and $36,000* fuel) with 112 days of servicing, or for a Lincoln Town Car $70k,000 ($28,000 maintenance and $42,000** fuel) with around 100 days of servicing.”

          So why are they comparing the costs of the Tesla without considering fuel to the costs of the M-B WITH fuel included?

          I’ll tell you why: because people will write anything, no matter how wrong or bad, and shamelessly publish it hoping someone will notice.

          Fake news, indeed.

          • 0 avatar
            mcs

            “why are they comparing the costs of the Tesla without considering fuel”

            because they were using Tesla superchargers to fuel the car. Those charges were pre-built into the purchase price of the car.

          • 0 avatar
            jalop1991

            @mcs: “because they were using Tesla superchargers to fuel the car. Those charges were pre-built into the purchase price of the car.”

            no, they were charging their cars at home. Like every Tesla owner.

            Sure, they were supplementing with superchargers as needed–but those are for road trips. Everyday use is charging at home.

            And now, of course, Tesla is charging for supercharger use.

  • avatar
    jpolicke

    If people wanted an EV, or a super high-MPG hybrid, they could buy one tomorrow. They are available and the selection and supply is ample. The inconvenient fact is that most people don’t, and government should not be penalizing manufacturers for building what consumers want to buy. It’s like the government setting a target for lettuce sales and penalizing steak houses when no one orders the vegetarian meal.

    • 0 avatar
      brandloyalty

      Sensible carbon taxation would help solve that problem.

      • 0 avatar
        stingray65

        A sensible carbon tax should cover the the damage to the environment caused by greenhouse gas emissions, and best estimates put those at about $50 per ton of CO2 equivalent emissions. This works out to about 50 cents per gallon tax, and you will no doubt be happy to learn that this is almost exactly what the current US state and federal taxes are on gasoline.

        • 0 avatar
          HotPotato

          Sure, but since those taxes go to things like roads that encourage more combustion, not less…it’s a pretty fair bet the levy would need to be on top of what’s currently charged on gasoline, and charged on everything involving carbon emissions rather than just gasoline, and dedicated to funding projects that reduce or capture carbon emissions, otherwise what’s the point: you want to a) align market incentives with actual costs, and b) solve the problem.

        • 0 avatar
          brandloyalty

          Nope. $50 per tonne is an arbitrary number chosen to balance between what people find palatable and make an impression something effective is being done. It is difficult to evaluate the damage done by a tonne of CO2, but the latest estimates are in the range of $500. Which is also near the current cheapest means of sequestering CO2.

          • 0 avatar
            stingray65

            Brand Loyalty – Here is a meta-analysis of the best estimates, and the Stern report that you are probably referring to is not taken serious by the scientific community and never passed a peer review. Most estimates are probably high because they only look at problems and therefore do not take into account the benefits of higher CO2 such as faster plant growth and longer growing seasons. Here is the link.

            http://www.economics-ejournal.org/economics/journalarticles/2008-25

  • avatar
    Master Baiter

    The total weight of all atmospheric CO2 is 3 x 10^12 tons.

    This plan reduces CO2 by 3.75 x 10^8 tons, which works out to .0125%

    Sounds really worthwhile.

    • 0 avatar
      Dan

      Over a 10 year period, in which time India alone will put out in the order of 3.75 x 10^10 tons.

      What we do or don’t do environmentally is entirely academic so long as the catastrophically fertile developing world continues to develop and you’re kidding yourself if they’re going to stop.

    • 0 avatar
      brandloyalty

      Do you buy lottery tickets?

  • avatar
    tylanner

    California is dragging the rest of the country to their promised land…kicking and screaming…lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

    We need to incentivize mindless, short-sighted idiocy out of fashion….

    • 0 avatar
      ernest

      True. I never know the age or residence of the posters, but the idea of a Carbon Tax is going to be tough one to sell the voters in the US. EV’s are widely considered a rich man’s game, not a matter of public policy. Then there’s the new reality of the carbon energy biz. We went from “Peak Oil” to the largest producer in the world in under 8 years. And- shocker- the reason it took that long is the previous administration did everything possible to stop the growth.

      • 0 avatar
        HotPotato

        That’s…half true? Yes, Americans are allergic to anything with the word “tax” in it. But beyond that? You can buy a used Nissan Leaf for 6 grand, if an EV is what you want. “Peak oil” dates back to oil company white papers in the 1950s: it was always about creating the illusion of scarcity to prop up prices, never about actual scarcity, though granted a whole lot of environmentalists fell for it. And the previous administration certainly didn’t “do everything possible to stop the growth” of fracking — they hardly lifted a finger to protect the environment from the consequences of the shale oil boom, since a) legacy rules from the previous administration didn’t really let them, b) plenty of jobs were being created, c) cheap oil was helping the recovery, and d) domestic oil blunts the power of Middle Eastern despots, which was important to Obama since he refused to hand over the reins to our Middle East policy to the Saudi royal family, unlike Trump—you can see the downside of the Trump approach in that there is no Plan B when the Saudis overreach, since we’ve already alienated everyone else by doing their bidding.

        • 0 avatar
          ernest

          @HotPotato
          “That’s…half true? Yes, Americans are allergic to anything with the word “tax” in it. But beyond that? You can buy a used Nissan Leaf for 6 grand, if an EV is what you want”

          But who does? Those things are a stranger on the road out here. Tesla S or Escalade… everywhere. Often in the same driveway.

          ” And the previous administration certainly didn’t “do everything possible to stop the growth” of fracking — they hardly lifted a finger to protect the environment from the consequences of the shale oil boom, since a) legacy rules from the previous administration didn’t really let them, b) plenty of jobs were being created, c) cheap oil was helping the recovery, and d) domestic oil blunts the power of Middle Eastern despots”

          We disagree. Let’s stay friends and not even go to Obama’s foreign policy.

        • 0 avatar
          Hummer

          Starving the Middle East by producing our own oil to fuel our vehicles does everyone better. Creates more jobs here, fuel is still relatively priced as it was before (paid $2.42 a gallon last week).

          Obama literally sent the Middle East pallet loads of cash, which in turn was given to terrorist that used it against us, how’s that for taking care of the issue in the ME, even the Saudi family could have seen the flaw in that.
          You have no idea what your talking about with Trump, through talks with SA the next in line for the throne was thrown out of his position due to his extremist views, the next in line is now pro-American and solidly supports American ideals. We have never been in a position with Saudi Arabia as good as we have it now.

          Meanwhile dems are pushing for a war in the Middle East because someone that’s not even an American citizen was killed ‘mysteriously’, ridiculous.

          • 0 avatar
            Luke42

            “Meanwhile dems are pushing for a war in the Middle East because someone that’s not even an American citizen was killed ‘mysteriously’, ridiculous.”

            As a Democrat, the idea that I’m pushing for a war in the middle East is ridiculous.

            Reducing our demand for Saudi oil? Sure. Maybe I’ll accelerate my plans to buy my first Tesla a bit.

            Sanctions for Saudi Arabia? Sure, but only if the policy is proposed and fully analyzed by people with a clue — which pretty much rules out anyone appointed by President Trump. (Paul Ryan, for all his faults and shortcomings, at least tries to be rigorous. Perhaps Ryan can propose it, and allow it to reviewed by real economists. I’d have much more confidence in that process.)

          • 0 avatar
            Hummer

            The WaPo sure seems to be riling up readers that the person killed is of American interests which is beyond ridiculous.

            Why are we looking for sanctions against Saudi Arabia, for the first time in my life time SA actually seems to be supporting American ideals and interests. They are actively talking with Israel on ways to achieve ME peace, the heir to the throne that had anti-American views has been cut and a new pro-democracy, pro-American successor is now next in line. Saudi Arabia is no longer controlling a weak American regime, but now peacefully coming to the table with ways of ending in-fighting in the Middle East.

            The Trump admin is the first admin in my lifetime to have a clue on how to deal with SA, and it shows.
            You can throw Slimy Paul Ryan’s name out all you want but he has never been nothing more than a democrats puppet; bought and paid for by the highest bidder.

  • avatar
    George B

    What the fuel economy standards need right now is 1) a delay in the implementation of the 2022 – 2025 fuel economy standard and some creative face saving fiction. The way I’d do it is to give auto manufacturers some extra credit for offering fuel efficient hybrids even if consumers don’t currently want hybrids while gasoline prices are relatively low. For example, if a manufacturer offers a vehicle as a hybrid, they get to start with a assumption of a 10% take rate added to the actual percentage of the hybrid version of that car that actually sell. That way manufacturers keep developing hybrids in spite of current low demand so they’re ready if gasoline prices spike up and consumer demand suddenly changes.

  • avatar
    slavuta

    They worry about environment? Stop fracking, ethanol first

    • 0 avatar
      Luke42

      The environmentalists have been ignored on reducing corn ethanol and fracking.

      Lots of shouting into the wind. But it’s hard to oppose subsidies for Rural America.

      Rural America desperately needs investment, but private investment hasn’t been happening (if it was going to happen, it would have happened by) and they’re philosophically opposed to public investment (“socialism”). So, their options are limited, even if the limits are partly self-inflicted. So, artificially inflated corn prices and extractive industry are what they get.

      The environmentalists don’t get anywhere, even with all of the best reasoning on their side.

  • avatar
    Zipster

    Sweetpotato:

    You should post here more often. There are legions of people who read this site who have limited knowledge of the facts and even more limited reasoning power.


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