Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Driving Electric(ally)?

It seems that when you pay attention to something, you tend to see more of it. It's like when you have some new gadget, device, or something and suddenly your spider-sense is set abuzz by them as they float by in other people's sphere.

In any case, I read this great article from Wired about Shai Agassi's vision of creating a completely new electrical fueling infrastructure for four-wheeled mobility. It still relies on a centralized power (pardon the pun) though it could be powered by distributed renewable energy generation stations as well. Driven: Shai Agassi's Audacious Plan to Put Electric Cars on the Road. Of course, the CO2 emissions involved in jetting all around the world will be paid for later (kind of like the over-leveraged banks now...).

What I found interesting was that the Wired article mentioned a meeting between Agassi and members of Daimler in Germany. Seems that they liked the idea, and decided to partner in their own way on their own turf with RWE in Germany. Heck, he already has a taker in Israel so he's just spreading his vision for a new way of doing things.
Daimler, RWE Announce Berlin electric car project

Then, the whole plug-in concept shows up in Masshightech, Simmons spinout sees a charger in every garage.

And, of course the west coast of the United States is in on this innovation (or would like to be), what with all the progressives in the Bay area and the Silicon Valley VCs. This appeared back in July and seems like a pretty cool project. San Francisco is soliciting interested parties to pitch projects to prepare the city for plug-in hybrids (dare I start calling them PIHs, pronounced "pies" or maybe PiHys, pronounced "pie-highs"?). Sounds good...where's mine? Preparing the Grid for Plug-in Hybrids.

About the same time, Time Magazine published this article, Is America Ready to Drive Electric? Are we? I'd prefer to see small renewable energy charging stations dotting the cities, perhaps powered by methane from food waste gathered from local neighborhoods. The key is to get away from the massively centralized and inefficient generation model and replace it with smaller closed loops of energy. It can be done.

Oh, and one more TH!NK.

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