From the Pacific Northest National Laboratories:- "If all the cars and light trucks in the nation switched from oil to electrons, idle capacity in the existing electric power system could generate most of the electricity consumed by plug-in hybrid electric vehicles[PHEVS]. A new study for the Department of Energy finds that "off-peak" electricity production and transmission capacity could fuel 84 percent of the country's 220 million vehicles if they were plug-in hybrid electrics...Because PHEVs are expected to cost about $6,000 to $10,000 more than existing vehicles — mostly due to the cost of batteries -- researchers evaluated how long it might take owners to break even on fuel costs. Depending on the price of gas and the cost of electricity, estimates range from five to eight years — about the current lifespan of a battery". If this idea took hold, utilities could end up promoting PHEVs as powerfully as do oil companies when they argue against CAFE standards. It's expression would be a patriotic meme: 'plug into a the security of a green future.'
Image credit:- Institute for The Analysis of Global Security