Pledge: I wont buy a car until I can buy a “green” one

And no, 50/50 sort of hybrids like those available today (even here in Croatia) don’t count. I don’t want a car that is still largely dependent on oil. I want a car that is, ideally, 100% driven by a clean fuel with no bad emissions. I can tolerate a tiny teeny amount of oil necessary as nothing but just a helper if there’s no better way, but that’s as far as I’m gonna go with oil.

And what makes me quite bold in this pledge, aside from the fact that I can’t afford buying a car anyway (I can barely afford getting a license), is that it seems rather likely that the green cars I’m talking about will be available on the market fairly soon, certainly sooner than I realistically planned to get rich. ;)

Even today, some people are already driving some electric cars (battery powered I assume, which you charge on your home plug). I mean, Tesla Motors must have had some customers already. So that’s one nice option to look forward to. But there is another very nice green option: Air Cars, apparently done by french and coming to market by next year (yes, 2009). In fact they already seem to have a whole bunch of them produced and here you can see a video of them in action. It is incredible how small, light and in fact simple-looking an engine is.

Air cars use compressed air, and when you see the animation of how it happens it actually becomes quickly quite clear. It seems that this technology can be called advanced not so much because of the ingenuity of the theoretical concept itself as much as for the artistry of its engineering implementation – putting this concept of turning the cylinders by the energy of air pressure into reality. I suppose compressed air is needed because it has a higher density and hence can apply higher force.

Air car can be fueled on a service station which would be providing nothing else than compressed air, something that I believe many existing fuel stations already have. But the beauty of this is that you don’t even need to go to a fuel station and pay for a dose of compressed air. You can run a compressor at home yourself – just plug it in. In fact, from what I hear the car itself has a compressor. Next step may be to put a solar panel on the cars top to generate electricity needed to power the compressor that feeds the engine with compressed air.

This way, your can basically say that your car is running in a 100% clean and environment friendly fashion because you aren’t even spending grid electricity (for which sometimes coal and other dirty fossils are needed to produce, albeit not always like in nuclear and hydro plants). To me this just about sounds like a nirvana of personal transportation! :)

It is interesting how much green technologies are being talked about and pushed these days. The dam created by the old energy and related industries can’t hold this innovation and pressure for much longer. I expect it to burst and for green cars, independent of now just too expensive oil, will become an every day reality. And it was about freaking time! Even this recent reaction is one too late! Did you feel the burn of Summer 2007? I feel just about anyone did! You just need to remember the last summer and look at the current oil prices to gain an insight, from two directions, into just how darn screwed we are if we don’t radically change something. And guess what, green tech will actually allow for easier and simpler lives than dealing with those ugly, dirty, unhealthy crap we’ve been dealing with so far. There is just no reason not to embrace it.

Perhaps at first there may be some inconveniences at first, but I am hard pressed at finding real ones.. I mean, what will be an inconvenience of an air car really that is more inconvenient than a standard oil car? That it doesn’t run faster than 120km/h? It better not to!!! With all of the killing that happens on the roads these days we ought to slow down a bit, and 120km/h is MORE than plenty if you ask me! There should be no complaints about that! Period.

So.. if you don’t have a car right now, either because you are young and still didn’t get around to it or just sold or crashed your old one – I encourage you to consider making your next car a green-tech powered one. If you can’t get it right now then if you anyhow can please wait until it becomes available or affordable enough. Heck if you never owned a car and used public transportation so far, you don’t have anything much to miss just yet – be patient for a year or few – perhaps try investing into some other big things if you can and then, when it becomes available get a green car.

Cheers!

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This entry was posted on Saturday, January 5th, 2008 at 6:51 am and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through this RSS 2.0 feed. You're welcome to leave a response, or a trackback from your own site.

  • http://inatie.wordpress.com Taco Buitenhuis

    Compressed air is a quite interesting way to store energy. It's certainly lots cheaper and cleaner to produce than hydrogen fuel cells. Especially the second type of engine shown looks brilliant. I can imagine the next generation of this type would be made of lightweight material (lighter than aluminium), giving electromotors/batteries serious competition in weight and range.

    Compressed air at the pressure needed by engines like this isn't available at fuel stations. Remember what was said in the video? 150 times the pressure of car tires!

    Also, I wonder about the safety of compressed air cars. The carbon fibre canisters won't explode, but when broken they will release a lot of air, which is something you don't want to happen near a fire, which could be caused by a collision with a regular car.

  • admin

    Indeed there are some safety concerns, but then it doesn't seem to me they're any worse than those of hydrogen powered cars of even good old combustion engines. In both of these cases there is something flameable to explosive involved. It just needs to be properly isolated and secured which I'm sure further development of this technology will take care of.

    Probably with least risk are electric cars though. There's nothing explosive, flamable of flame-indusctive involved and the only danger imaginable may be high electricity – and I'm not sure electricity in those cars is that high (don't quote me on that).

    Cheers

  • http://solarenergy.blogcups.com/ Hillary Hildenbrand

    Hi there, ive recently just been shocked at my electricity bills lately, paying way too much, im sure we can all agree? I think solar energy is the way to go, easy to set up and pretty self explanatory, and where i live, i can actually sell the power generated back to the grid, Pretty sweet. The post is really nice mate, giving me that extra push to go out plug my appliances in the sun from now on. Cheerio!

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