We DO ride an e-bike
A Tesla super charging station is going in on Odana Road, just east of Whitney Way on the west side of Madison WI. Between the HyVee food supermarket and the Mobil gasoline station (for those who like their irony). More are going in at East Towne Mall, at the Hy Vee located at 3801 E. Washington Ave., patrons-only at the Hilton on E. Wilson Street, and at the Edgewater Hotel on Lake Mendota. (Elektrokleinstfahrzeugen: small electric vehicles.)
Biden is promoting electric vehicles, mainly for its supposed amelioration of Klimawandel (climate change). That means more transmission lines, more pipelines, or (better yet) nuclear power plants. Got lithium? (“Lithium mining may not be green friendly.” Ya think?)
Tesla says “superchargers in urban areas are located in places where it’s convenient to spend time, like grocery stores or shopping centers, which means owners can charge while going about their weekly routine.”
That’s because a recharge good for 200 miles requires 15 minutes. Don’t have to pull out your credit card; it knows who you are. You can charge your Tesla at home using the standard 110-120V AC outlet. That, however, takes days, not hours. A 220-240V plug at 40 amps will do the job in 8 to 12 hours — like, overnight. But requires a $500 wall connector installed by an electrician. Supercharging at Tesla’s stations is 480 volts at 100 amps using direct current, not alternating current as is found at home. Tesla stations are proprietary; they won’t work for other electric vehicles.
→ For further study: These automakers are going electric.
It’s back in print
Madison’s Isthmus, in actual, tangible newsprint, is back on the supermarket stands but as a monthly instead of weekly. First one since March 19, 2020, when the Covid pandemic forced it on-line and into a new ownership model. (More here.) Congratulations.
Does the German language have a built-in sense of humor? We’re familiar with schadenfreude, the secret pleasure in someone else’s misfortune. (Explains the wall-to-wall coverage of Andrew Cuomo on Fox News.)
Bob Keller’s son Jim, in town from his job as a translator for the Los Angeles school system, put us onto “Backpfeifengesicht.” Translation: A face that needs a good slapping! Patrick O’Loughlin adds Treppenwitz — literally, a joke that occurs to you in the stairwell. The idea being that you didn’t think of that clever comeback until too late. Wasn’t that an episode of Seinfeld featuring George Costanza? (“I went to the jerk store but they were out of YOU!”)
Erklärungsnot (literally: “explanation poverty”) describes the state you might find yourself in when no excuse will get you out of the trouble you’re in. (Again see: Andrew Cuomo.) Patrick’s favorite: Fremdschamen — means feeling embarrassed for someone who does not but ought to feel embarrassed. (Cuomo again!!!)
→ For extra credit: Untranslatable German words.
Blaska’s Bottom Line: Glad we don’t write headlines for a German newspaper!
People who don’t drive electric cars have a misconception that “Fast Charging” is The Only Option. They also tend to believe that “expensive new infrastruture” is needed to support all these newfangled EVs.
The reality is a bit more nuanced. I’ll explain:
Most folks don’t drive more than 50 miles per day. You can easily add 50 miles of range overnight from a boring-old 120v/15amp garage outlet. At the same time (when everyone’s sleeping) – the grid load is much less. HVAC, TV, water heaters, etc…all run less. This leaves headroom within the existing infrastructure to support overnight mass-charging of EVs.
It may be that more infrastructure is needed down the line? But I see a lot of that happening by homeowners adding solar/wind power generation. They’ll do it, because it saves them money on their energy bill.
The reality is we won’t know the reality until it actually happens. Hopefully by the time I’m in the market for an EV we’ll have better batteries.
“It may be that more infrastructure is needed down the line?”
Has anyone considered the logistics of this, how much it’ll cost, and what the impact on the environment will be? Please don’t say “it’ll save money down the line” because that’s arbitrary.
“But I see a lot of that happening by homeowners adding solar/wind power generation. They’ll do it, because it saves them money on their energy bill.”
Not for me. Wind energy kills millions of birds. In order for wind energy to be efficient you’d have to install A LOT of turbines. That means you have to clear large swathes of forest, which is counter to good environmental stewardship.
Speaking of environmental stewardship….whaddya think kills more nature? EVs and renewable energy? Or continuing to burn petrol-based fuels?
Just askin’ the question.
You didn’t answer MY questions about how much this infrastructure will cost and impact the environment. I genuinely want to know what the costs and benefits are in both the short and long term.
I make my decisions based on facts, not feel good anecdote. Here are a few facts I’ve gathered over the years that are guiding my decisions.
-In order for wind energy to be effective, you have to install A LOT of turbines. This requires the clearing of large swathes of land. Not only will millions of birds continue to die, but many more wild animals will be displaced.
How much sense does it make to destroy land (including CO2 inhaling trees) to build something that may or may not serve our huge need for energy? Deforestation is also a prime cause of CO2 emissions.
-Solar panels contain a host of toxic elements, including lead. If broken, they can leach into our waterways. In fact, California is now considering whether to classify solar panel WASTE as hazardous materials.
-Building solar will require a huge amount of natural resources, including the mining of silver over the NEXT COUPLE OF DECADES. Many of the metals used to create these panels are mined in countries that don’t conform to the same labor laws we do. For example, cobalt is mined in the DRC. Have you seen how those people, including children are treated?
Progressives talk about white privilege, but will conveniently overlook the transgressions occurring overseas against poor, black people, and minorities if it means they can continue to have access to their Smartphones and woke technology. So forgive me if I’m skeptical of the Progressive brand of “environmentalism”.
-The creation of wind and solar components creates A LOT waste.
A few other points to consider:
-While we shouldn’t abandon energy alternatives, there is no way solar or wind in its current format comes even close to prime time.
-Wind energy is a multi billion dollar business run by a few elites, with government intervention. It reeks of corporatism.
-China emits the most CO2 globally (I think something like 30% while we’re at 15%). If the US is serious about reducing carbon input, why are most of our good made over there? You’d think that building locally, using sustainable technology, would be better for the environment, no?
This just scratches the surface. I can go on.
Good points Liberty. IMHO the key to all this working some day will not be wind or solar but building more nuclear plants. I hate it when EV fanboys just point at the damn car and say “look, zero carbon emissions! It’s just that simple” . No, it’s not that simple.
No, it’s not that simple. We can’t virtue signal ourselves out of our problems.
Liberty — as mentioned in my original post, it doesn’t look like additional infrastructure is needed. I don’t have hard numbers, but the way it looks, the additional incremental capacity might be produced by homeowners themselves — because the cost of doing so works out in their favor.
You listed a laundry list of issues with renewable energies. I don’t disagree with you on any of that. All of that needs to be rectified.
HOWEVER, I still don’t believe any of those problems will lead to a worse outcome, than continuing down our current path of using petrol/fossil fuels. Something has to change.
Chevy has informed owners of the Bolt that they should not leave them plugged in overnight. Something about battery fires.
Electric vehicles charged off of the grid are running on whatever the baseload generation comes from. In some places that’s hydro. In other places that natural gas. In other places it’s coal.
But…Telsa, the Coal Powered Car doesn’t quite have a big cool factor, for some reason.
It may be that more infrastructure is needed down the line?
It will be. The basic laws of electricity are not subject to repeal, even by really progressive people who tap their heels together three times and hold their face just right. If you want more amperes delivered, you need a bigger wire and a bigger generator of some kind hooked to it. No free lunches will be served. An electric vehicle fleet means more power generation. Nuclear will deliver that power just fine, 24/7, except for the religious scruples of ignorant progressives.
Solar panels on the roof won’t cut it, and backyard wind generators are good only for a few light bulbs. The numbers do not lie, unlike politicians, NGO’s, etc.
There are two fundamental problems with nuclear power plants. First, accidents happen and they are usually catastrophic when they do.
Second, where and how to *safely* dispose of nuclear waste. This isn’t something most laypeople consider when discussing nuclear power but it is a huge problem and challenge.
The five minute prageru video lecture that gsson posted link to below succinctly explains the folly of subsidized wind and solar which are doing more harm than good and making certain people obscenely wealthy.
I have mixed feelings about nuclear. On the plus side it has a small carbon footprint, but as you pointed out, storage and fallout from accidents are huge issues. Remember what happened in the Ukraine in the 1980s? Visitors to Chernobyl are asked not to touch the dogs for fear they still carry radioactive materials.
I’ll need more assurances & information about the safety measures being put in place before I can enthusiastically support nuclear energy.
One thing for sure is that wind is NOT our future, and I question solar for the reasons I stated above. And you’re right in that people are making billions off this, with help of political partners. It reeks of corporatism.
Chernobyl was a poor design.
“Chernobyl was a poor design.”
Great point. Technology & safety measures have indeed improved since then, and my fears of nuclear might very well be based on these past disasters.
Nuclear is still very much on the table for me, but I need more assurances about safety measures before committing 100%.
Andrew Cuomo is now probably experiencing “ein komisches Gefühl in der Rosette” – lit “a funny feeling in the rose window (anus)” as the “pucker factor” sets in.
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Incidentally, kudos to Enzo the cat. Birds (and bats) are hard to catch. It might be my imagination, or just the photo, but he appears to have that “look” that cats get when they KNOW that they are going to be bad, but are powerless to stop themselves.
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The French have their own expression for “Treppenwitz”: “esprit de l’escalier,” literally the spirit of the staircase. No English equivalent, maybe because the English always express their witticisms at precisely the right moment (see Oscar Wilde).
not sure I can find a Små elbiler to fit my demanding lifestyle.
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Understandable. But not everyone is a Formula 1 race driver like you, Norm.
RE: Electric vehicles… For a whiff of reality, try this…
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Fossil fuels in itself is not evil. It’s our over-consumption of them that’s the problem.
Carbon emissions were reduced during COVID because people were not going out as much. Has anyone considered that consuming just a little less AND more responsibly as a solution? This would of course require the virtual signalers to sacrifice some of their online time (those serves take guzzle a lot of energy), not rely on a new phone every year, and stop rioting & destroying cities every time they have a temper tantrum.
Our solution lies in the market and human ingenuity. Look at airline travel for example. Those little tips they now engineer on commercial planes save energy AND have allowed us to fly for less.
Marxism and government control is antithetical to this.
A bit late to this thread but there are two types of nuclear power: fission and fusion. Fission is what we have currently and is the splitting of heavy unstable atoms (uranium) into small atoms and indeed, creates radioactive waste. Fusion on the other hand is combining small atoms (hydrogen) into larger compounds (water) with no radioactive waste. The problem is containment of the hot plasma, which requires massive amounts of power, but the payoff will be limitless power generation and basically no waste byproducts. Literature suggest we are about 20 yrs away yet so clearly, nuclear fusion is the ticket, we just need to make do until that time.