PLUG OK license plate
CalCars' New Global Warming Flyer/View ABC GMA video/New Talking Points
Feb 22, 2006 (From the CalCars-News archive)
This posting originally appeared at CalCars-News, our newsletter of breaking CalCars and plug-in hybrid news. View the original posting here.
Want more? Become a subscriber to CalCars-News:

4 items: global warming flyer/video/updated talking points/32-page brochure

You can now view the Feb 21 ABC Good Morning America 2:45 minute clip featuring Pres. Bush plus a brief appearance by Felix Kramer. See the link in "Quick-Takes" on the CalCars home page, or in the News & Events section of CalCars. (You need the Apple QuickTime viewer for Windows or Mac.)­calcars-globalwarming-22feb06.pdf We encourage you to download and distribute our new one-page flyer, "120V+ E85 Plug-In Hybrids Plus Ethanol: We Can Tackle Global Warming"

We may update this document further, but we're very happy with it in its current state. Its most essential component is the following endorsements (organizational affiliations listed for identification only)

"Vehicle emissions are the greatest challenge that we must overcome to stabilize climate. The plug-in hybrid approach, as being pursued by CalCars, seems to be our best bet for controlling vehicle CO2 emissions in the near-term." --James Hansen, Director of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies

"Moving to these highly efficient plug-in gas-electric hybrids could cut U.S. gasoline use by 85%. Even more important, it could cut automobile carbon emissions by some 85%, making the United States a model for other countries." - -Lester Brown, President, Earth Policy Institute, author, "Plan B 2.0

"We should have a national program to promote plug-in hybrid cars running on electricity and biofuels. I'm happy that initiatives are coming from entrepreneurial groups like and from state and local campaigns." --Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., Senior Attorney, Natural Resources Defense Council

"When entrepreneurs and venture capitalists focus on environmental challenges, we can create whole industries and change behaviors. Innovative campaigns like CalCars' for plug-in hybrids hold up a guiding light to steer our efforts." --Sun Paul, co-founder, BrightMail, Power Lunch for Bay Area Entrepreneurs

"As California leads on climate change policy, the transportation sector holds they key. PHEVs are ready to be rolled out, starting with corporate and local government fleets." --Gail Slocum, former Mayor, Menlo Park, Climate Change Regulatory Attorney

"[Plug-in hybrids equal] more energy security and less global warming." --Nicholas Kristof, New York Times, February 5, 2006, "100 M.P.G. Cars: It's a Start"

"[Plug-in hybrids'] potential in terms of national policy, and in terms of global warming, ought to be focused on by anyone paying over $2 a gallon. And yes, there is an infrastructure investment. Each family would need an extension cord." --James Woolsey, Former Director, Central Intelligence Agency

We've made our 10 Talking Points for PHEVs more concise. New PDF is at the CalCars/About/Downloads page­downloads.html and the text version is below.

Finally, an updated version of our "Recommended Mix" of flyers and news clips is now available at the same place. It includes the global warming flyer, the new Talking Points and updated pages from Plug-In Partners.

February 12, 2006

1. WHY PLUG-IN HYBRIDS? Today's hybrids are efficient because they don't idle, they recapture braking energy into a battery, and they use smaller engines. They"re a great step forward -- but they're still 100% gas-fueled. Use a larger, rechargeable battery and you add a second cleaner, cheaper, domestic energy source: electricity.

2. SPEND LESS TIME -- AND MONEY -- AT THE PUMP. A plug-in hybrid (PHEV) is like having a second fuel tank you always use first. Fill up at home from an ordinary socket, at a cost equivalent to less than $1/gallon. [See box]

3. USE NO GAS FOR SHORT TRIPS, STILL HAVE UNLIMITED RANGE. If your batteries have a longer range than your commute, you'll almost never need gas. But if you forget to plug in, or take a longer trip, you have the same range as always from a gas engine -- but in a clean, efficient hybrid.

4. NEO-CONS AND GREENS AGREE. PHEVs have been endorsed by an alliance of environmentalists and conservatives who see it as the best way to cut our foreign "oil addiction." Republicans and Democrats, Senators Hatch, Lieberman and Obama, former cabinet members Shultz and Woolsey, and recently President Bush have endorsed PHEVs. Use E85 and 100+MPG PHEVs become "flex-fuel" PHEVs getting 500 MPG of gasoline (+ electricity + ethanol).

5. KEEP THE EARTH COOL. Even though coal powers half the nation's electricity, driving electrically produces 45% lower greenhouse gases than a gas-only car. This will only improve as utilities use cleaner, renewable energy.

6. LEAD CAR-MAKERS OUT OF THE WILDERNESS. US car-makers missed the boat on hybrids; now they"re playing catch-up. PHEVs offer one company the chance to leapfrog its competitors. Today's batteries are good enough; they will improve and get cheaper as production increases.

7. SAVE MONEY IN THE LONG RUN. In high volumes, car-makers could sell PHEVs for under $2,000-$5,000 more than current hybrids. Just as car buyers pay for large engines or leather seats without expecting a return on investment, early adopters will pay extra for the PHEV "green feature." The bonus? Projections based on experience from electric car fleets show PHEVs have a lower lifetime cost of ownership than any other vehicle.

8. POWER YOUR HOUSE WITH YOUR CAR. Hybrids and PHEVs can be used as mobile generators after disasters and outages, providing low-emission 120-volt back-up power for days to emergency centers and individual homes.

9. PHEVS ARE ALREADY HERE. For 10 years, Dr. Andy Frank at UC Davis has converted Ford/GM cars and SUVs. DaimlerChrysler is now testing PHEV versions of the Mercedes Sprinter 15-passenger commercial van. Last year, non-profit built the first Prius PHEV. This year EDrive Systems, LLC will sell Prius conversions.

10. DEPLOY THE FLEET. Fleet buyers are leading the way on many fronts. Plug-In Partners is a national campaign for a large fleet buy. To slash battlefield costs and get the no-heat "footprint" of electric vehicles, the military may be a big buyer. New tax credits and company benefits can help buy down extra costs. Other incentives are on their way from all levels of government. And CalCars hopes to partner with a car company, converting an existing hybrid to meet a fleet market demand we estimate at 10,000-100,000 vehicles.

Here's another way to think about it: At $3/gallon of gas, driving a non-hybrid car costs 8-20 cents/mile (depending on your miles/gallon). With a PHEV, local travel and commuting can drop to 2-4 cents/mile. Toyota Prius: 260 Watt-hours/electric mile at "off-peak" (overnight) electricity rate (8.8 cents/kilowatt hour) equals a cost of 2.3 cents/mile. Multiply this by the 45 MPG of a typical Prius to get the equivalent of $1.03/gallon. Typical Non-Hybrid SUV: 400 Watt-hours/electric-mile at the off-peak rate equals a cost of 3.5 cents/mile. Multiply this by the less efficient SUV's average of 18 miles/gallon to get an even better $0.63/gallon. (SUVs get low mileage, so they improve even more!)

Copyright 2003-09 California Cars Initiative, an activity of the International Humanities Center | Site Map