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E-M:/ Re: Studies that study nothing, reports that reportnothing -Reply



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Enviro-Mich message from Pete Pasterz <Pete.Pasterz@USDWP.MSU.EDU>
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You wrote:
 I am amazed that people still believe this sort of drivel. If people really
wanted 45 mpg cars, they would buy them! They are available, you know. 

>>There are a few, small, underappointed and underpowered cars available that we can
"choose", but the point was that the average for all vehicles should (and can) be much
higher.  Just like the pollution reductions in cars that we achieved, so can we change the
technology of the engines to use fuels more efficiently.   Just look at the Rosen (owner of
Compaq computers) jet-flywheel system, the hydrogen engine being developed by an east
coast company, or even the Electric/gas hybrid car introduced in Japan by Toyota. <<  

Why don't people buy them? Because people value other things besides mpg, and
dollars saved at the pump don't come close to matching the value of features
thereby lost.

>>People don't buy them because they have been 1) convinced that  bigger = safer (which
is only true as long as the spread between the mass of vehicles is increasing such as the
current self-fulfilling prophesy of the sale of more units of trucks--including SUV's--than cars
in the U.S.) and that Trucks are the most desirable in terms of personal image (Power,
outdoors image); and 2) misled by the false economics of motor fuels--that is that as we
deplete them, and they increase our global climate change the cost (adjusted for inflation)
GOES DOWN!   You can bet that values would change radically if the cost at the pump
would double. (remember 1973-1978 and the sales of Japanese vehicles)

This "convincing" (read marketing, advertising.....) is because the auto industry knows that
they can sell these vehicles at a much HIGHER PROFIT than cars of any kind, let alone not
having to spend $$ on R&D to design a more efficient transportation system.

The only features lost are: Hauling .5 to 1 ton of cargo, towing heavy equipment, or getting
traction in off-road travels.   How many people REALLY need to do these things daily,
weekly, monthly or even yearly???   Most of these vehicles are used for commuting/errand
running, which can be done by foot, on a bike, on a bus, in a train, in a small car, in a big
car--all more efficiently than in a truck.<<

Pete Pasterz
pasterz@pilot.msu.edu

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==============================================================
ENVIRO-MICH:  Internet List and Forum for Michigan Environmental
and Conservation Issues and Michigan-based Citizen Action.   Archives at
http://www.great-lakes.net/lists/enviro-mich/

Postings to:  enviro-mich@great-lakes.net      For info, send email to
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