Like the coal-powered 1873 Bollee Steam Car pictured here, every plug in hybrid dream and every all-electric car prototype sold in North America currently endorses a dirty-coal-fired, climate-destroying future. With over half the electricity currently produced in the US generated by coal, and with hundreds more dirty coal based electrical generation plants slated for rapid construction, paralleling a proposal for a raft of taxpayer funded coal-to-liquid diesel plants, no intellectually honest observer can look at the all-electric, rechargeable Tesla car and see good odds for reduced climate risk. We were reminded of how powerful the attraction of coal is for politicians of every stripe by the recent post on this very blog showing the current US Secretary of State giving the almost-commercial Tesla electric sports car a "thumbs up" and by the accelerating rate at which political campaign donations have been flowing from the "coalies" over the last few years. Want a closeup of the looming street brawl between the "coalies" gang and the "climate kids?" Today's New York Times has the dirty details. This is not going to be pretty and resolution will not be fast. The only way to begin cleaning up your electric car fantasy, or even your "clean diesel" fantasy for that matter, is to insist that all new coal fired electricity generation plant permits, and prospective government loans for "dirty-coal-to-liquid" plants come with a design requirement for C02 sequestration. And that only gets us to a break-even emissions future at best. If you're beyond the fantasy stage - a Tesla owner for example - there's a simple solution: buy green electricity to recharge your vehicle.
Important Update:- California is "walking the walk" on this very issue. "The California Energy Commission on Wednesday imposed new rules that forbid municipal utilities, including the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, from signing new contracts with coal-fired power plants unless those plants find a way to pump their emissions underground." For details, see San Francisco Gate article here. As existing California power supply contracts expire anyone residing there who is recharging any sort of electric vehicle will be driving as green as green will get. California, in other words, will be Tesla heaven. TreeHugger apologizes for not pointing this out in the original posting of a few hours ago. Image credit:: Patent Pending See also: Who Are The Coal-To-Liquids Players?