"Back in 2008, a lot of people thought higher (sales) numbers were achievable within 10 years," Michael Holman, a research director at Lux Research, told Design News. "But that's an area where people have come around to more realistic views. They're realizing that it might take a longer time, coupled with some fundamental scientific breakthroughs, before the battery costs get down to the level that's needed."
To be sure, the forecast isn't grim for all electrified vehicles. Plug-in hybrids, particularly those with smaller batteries, seem to have a better near-term outlook. By 2020, Lux Research predicts the auto industry will hit annual sales of 600,000 "light" plug-in hybrids (like the Prius PHV) and 150,000 "heavy" plug-ins (like the Volt). In contrast, Lux says sales of pure electrics will reach just 60,000 per year by 2020.
It's worth repeating that battery size plays a big role in those numbers. The Prius PHV, for example, employs a 4.4kWh lithium-ion battery (hence the higher sales forecast), while the Volt uses a 16kWh pack, the Leaf employs a 24kWh unit, and the Tesla Model S can reach as high as 85kWh. The bottom line is that the vehicles with massive battery packs generally have lower sales expectations.
None of this should be a surprise, of course. Bigger battery packs cost a lot more. And despite the ever-present hype around electric cars, consumers will usually reach for the more cost-effective solution first. "The economics of battery-electric cars don't make a lot of sense right now," Holman told us. "With hybrids -- even micro-hybrids -- you can get similar benefits in terms of reduced gasoline cost for a lot less money."
They have proved unequivocally that the heat being lost from the earth and it's environment is in actuality much much greater than the figure being used in the 'normal' climate change model, produced and maintained by CRU for inclusion into the IPCC reports
IPCC papers are used to guide all world governments on the climate change future, and they are all wrong, as proved by NASA. When asked if the latest report will include NASA's recent findings they have not been very forthcoming with an answer. That speaks volumes.
if yiou are using a computer model (all predictions to date are based on model, produced by conjecture and assumption, and yoiu were given the chance to include some actual fact figures representative of accurate measurements made in the real world, wouldn't yiou include them even just to test your model's ability to reflect reality. i would
I don't know an engineer worth his salt who would say that actual measurements are not worthy of inlusion either in the model or in arguments connected with it.
CharlesM, are you aware how wrong the model and all the papers, peer-reviewed and otherwise, which have been produced on the back of the assumed figure for heat loss into space must now be considered to be flawed, because new evidence containing measured facts has come to light ? I hope you can see there is no point in contesting the use of a actual measurement in favour of all previious assumed or presumed heat loss figures.
Charles, only a piggish person can live a piggish lifestyle and as you have declared that all deniers can be piggish, are yiou saying with a matter of certainty now that all of the converted couldn't possibly live a piggish lifestyle ?
Give that a moment's thought, please. Yoiu are attemptiong to say that only the people who refuse to give up the position of sceptic , defined by the OED as a person who doubts accepted theories, can be piggish. Should i assume when you went from being a doubting sceptic (as a practitioner of the scientific method, yiou must have changed over at some point), that a new halo together with a pair of gilded wings were installed on you.
Like I said, it is evangelism. it has no purpose in this discussion. There is no moral high ground to be had in science. Science has no morals, just facts.
CO2 levels have been much higher than they are today, and yet the temperature was colder at times furing that that period.
Attribution and context please.
I made an assumption that you have read the leading reports by the IPCC, the same reports used by your government, and also used by as many other governments as the IPCC can convince to use them, and upon reading at least one of those reports you will have seen data reflecting the historic changes in the levels of CO2. Thos ereports show data in graphical form which accurately supports my statment that CO2 levels on earth have been higher (over ten times higher at some points) than the current level.
Did you ever read an IPCC report Charles ?
There has never ever been a time when the earth's climate was stable. It has always been rising or falling in temperature, in level of atmospheric CO2, in levels of methane, background radiation and trying not to point at the elephant in the room too obviously, the level of solar radiation.
Ah, it just depends on how you want to define the relative term stable. This too is laughable, were this not a serious topic.
It is true that stability is a relative term. Relative terms are not normally laughable, in and of themselves.
If yiou wish, we can adopt a period of time to the resolution of 10 years for the purposes of making a measurement of stability. This makes it possible to say that at no time in earths history has the climate been stable between any time successive ten year periods. At grosser resolutions, this instability becomes increasingly more obvious.
Who laughs ?
In one report the IPCC produce (support by the CRU in East Anglia) we read the ridiculous statment that 'The sun does not affect earth's climate".
Attribution please. Did you find this buried in a so-called skeptic website on the intertubes? Congratulations! You obviously can't distinguish signal from noise, and noise is always present. Therefore you can't be trusted to interpret signals.
Attribution is extant in the first sentence. If you do not read the IPCC reports yourself it is unsurprising you have no access to their statments.
CharlesM, as mentioned in my response to ttemple, NASA has shown that accurate mesurements made from space shows beyond all reasonable doubt that the figure used by the IPCC or heat lost into space to be fallacious.
Are you a designer, CharlesM, or a reporter ? When you design something, starting with a model, do you design using assumed or presumed figures, or do you include as much real world data as possible ? If you use real world data (which I sincerely hope is true) would yoiu suggest that maybe the IPCC ought to also do the same thing and now include the new NASA produced data concerning the heat lost into space from earth and it's environment ?
"The magnitude of the surface temperature response of the climate system to an imposed radiative energy imbalance remains just as uncertain today as it was decades ago . Over 20 coupled ocean-atmosphere climate models tracked by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) produce a wide range of warming estimates in response to the infrared radiative forcing theoretically expected from anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions ."
As (mostly) engineers on this board, I think that we all know that the nature of "computer models" is that until all inputs & parameters are understood - results can be "garbage in = garbage out". Once those items are understood, the computer model can have tremendous predictive powers (FEA, CFD, etc.).
Note that my personal position on AGW remains one of skeptic (of BOTH sides...but most suspicious of the ZEALOTS that loudly scream their positions using only partial or feeble proof).
The NASA measurements are interesting, and throw water on a lot of zealot fires. That still doesn't prove, however, that AGW is NOT happening, as there is still enough uncertainty for an intellectually honest person to say "we don't know for sure yet". More research is appropriate.
When one considers the complex feedback loops in the earth's biosphere, it gets very complicated:
a) higher temps and higher CO2 will create more algae (and plant) growth - absorbing more CO2, helping reduce the problem.
b) higher avg temp will evaporate more water, potentially creating more clouds, which reflect more solar energy, cooling the earth.
c) higher avg temp will increase the avg radiative emissions from the earth, cooling it.
d) a positive feedback issue: as ocean temps rise, the dissolved CO2 starts to outgas - adding to greenhouse gasses. Also, frozen methane hydrates in the polar zones can start to sublimate methane - which would be destabilizing.
So...while I'm not saying this is anywhere near complete - there are certainly reasons why the earth's temperatures have been as stable as they are...and we are nowhere near understanding how the big picture of these interactions works.
Also, you'll see that I'm 100% in favor of getting us off the use of fossil fuels ASAP...but my core reasons are different. I'm not sure if AGW is something we should be scared to death about, but a much more certain fact is that fossil fuels are finite and will be depleted in the not too distant future. Therefore, even if our underlying reasons are different - we can agree that the prioritization of deploying renewable energy sources should be extremely high, so that we are ready when fossil fuels run low. Also - why not use oil for more useful things like synthesizing plastics, etc. instead of just BURNING it? Once oil / fossil fuels run low - manmade CO2 levels will fall dramatically, and the AGW arguments become moot. The earth's temperatures will still continue to fluctuate, possibly even to disasterous levels, driven by nature's own forces.
The other fact that I have become convinced of that is controversial to many is that EV's are NOT very beneficial in converting our energy usage to renewables. They are at most a "second phase" that can leverage the renewable sources once they are deployed on the grid. As long as the majority of electric power is generated by fossil fuels - the BIG PICTURE is that EV's don't really help much in this regard.
Now...EV zealots, searching for any toehold in this debate will typically drop back to smaller facts to continue the debate, such as:
1. The grid has SOME renewable content now, so won't EV's at least partially benefit from these ? The answer is YES. Especially in regions with high renewable content. It is a judgement / opinion, but using the USA avg. grid sources of 68% fossil fueled electricity - I think that the benefit is not enough to justify retooling our entire infastructure and making the significant cost and convenience trade-offs that EV's currently require. On an individual basis - sure...if you want to spend your money that way - go for it. In fact, for best benefit, buy $30K worth of solar panels and charge your EV with it. Just don't think about how much money you have spent doing the "green" thing. Also, I should note that the main benefit in this case comes from the solar panels, not the EV.
2. Maybe we should "prime the pump" of EV technology, to make sure it is ready when the grid is converted to renewables. Well..again....a half-truth but impractical IMO. The support costs to sell EV's today are HUGE, the benefits small and temporary, and the grid will not have a high percentage of renewable sources for many decades. So...it's too early to get too excited about EV's, IMO. Let's take that stimulus money and put it directly into developing better renewable energy power sources and grid-scale energy storage (Bill Gates gets this...he has funded at least one major effort for grid storage).
My biggest concession: maybe the government supports should be tailored more intelligently - subsidize EV's only in regions that have high renewable / non-CO2 grid sources (hydro, wind, geothermal, nuclear). That would give the most environmental "bang for the buck". By the way - remember the "buck" is your money, taken from taxes, so let's spend it wisely.
cheers, we are all on this planet together. let's try to act accordingly.
Regarding your list of a - d ....what about 'e - lower temps, higher CO2' and 'higher temps, lower CO2' these are both equally valid.
Living in Scotland gives me the benfit of access to 30% renewable electricity and no nuclear in the mix. We have a surplus of homegrown electricity and export a continuous amount down to north England. Of course , we are blessed with plenty of wind and water.
I think you're correct to bring taxes into this. If we all didn't have to pay the huge amount of tax burden to pay for troops to safeguard our oil in other countries, because we didn't need the oil, then how much richer will we be, and we can then afford to be more generous with funding alternative ideas, EV's for example, and other developments across the board.
Perhapsthe biggest shame in all of this, isn't anything to do with AGW, or renewable energy, or being smart with nuclear. The biggest issue for me is that considering the huge amount of beneficial medicines and fertilisers we extract from crude oil....it seems like burning it in internal combustion engines is the most stupid thing you could do with it
Thank you, ttemple & fixitsan. You're comments are very kind.
I hope that I don't come across as too much of a "know it all", because there is always so much more to learn, and experts in any given field that know so much more than me. However, as you might guess - I've been interested in and obsessively studied many different aspects of alternative energy, technology, cars, etc. My biggest strength, I guess, is being very broad, deep in a few areas, and my mindset is to always try to cut through hype and dig to the REAL understanding of issues. Today, there is a lot of hype about EV's, AGW, and of course many other things!
fixitsan - I've always wanted to visit Scotland. I visited northern Ireland (Belfast) this year...maybe soon?
Note that the lovely charts presented below (above if oldest first) do not show that the earth's GW parameters are just variable, but that they tend to oscillate in a well defined band. A constant oscillarion(similar to a fixed AC voltage). This does not imply that the range with human intervention will not change noticably, and has no real data on our comfort (food sources and weather patterns) as this range shifts. What I got out of the heat balance is that our contribution is a small part of the total, but that this may be all that is required to swing us from one extreem to another. I would feel a lot happerier about this if we knew what limited the extreemes in the past and that our massive water impoundments and deforestation, had not weakened exactly that limiting factor.
Perhaps we should be developing electric rail cars, with modest batteries? A lot more construction involved, but it will certainly work technically.
Peachtree City, GA (where I used to work) has a huge network of paths specifically designated for bicycles AND GOLF CARTS. Virtually 100% of the households there have at least one golf cart. These are registered and licensed by the city, and are EXTREMELY popular. Some of these are gasoline or propane/CNG powered, but the vast majority are electric. One factor: these are permiitted to be driven by UNLICENSED drivers too. These are the perfect NEVs you want (at least in a moderate climate like Atlanta) BUT it also requires an infrastructure (the network of paths and dedicated bridges to keep the "real cars" and golf carts from "fraternizing") and maintenance of same. A lot of these are actually configured as 4-seaters!
Some cars are more reliable than others, but even the vehicles at the bottom of this year’s Consumer Reports reliability survey are vastly better than those of 20 years ago in the key areas of powertrain and hardware, experts said this week.
As it does every year, Consumers Union recently surveyed its members on the reliability of their vehicles. This year, it collected data on approximately 1.1 million cars and trucks, categorizing the members’ likes and dislikes, not only of their vehicles, but of the vehicle sub-systems, as well.
A few weeks ago, Ford Motor Co. quietly announced that it was rolling out a new wrinkle to the powerful safety feature called stability control, adding even more lifesaving potential to a technology that has already been very successful.
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