For those of you who have missed me, I’ve been taking some time off enjoying holidays with an expanding family. Number one son is getting married, and I’ve already got a “World’s Greatest Father-in-Law” coffee cup. If I’d known it was this easy, I’d have skipped the son and gone straight to the daughter-in-law.
Lots is happening on the energy/climate front, and I’ve got a number of posts started, but I saw something today that really brought home how fast the world of energy is changing.
Whenever I write something remotely negative about the oil and gas industry, I’m sure to get at least one email that says something like, “If you hate oil and gas so much, why don’t you get rid of your car and start walking?” I usually resist the urge to respond, although I’ve got some good comebacks up my sleeve.
What got me so excited is that, at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas today, Chevrolet announced that it has won the race to produce a truly affordable electric car. It’s called the Chevy Bolt, ready for sale later this year.
Priced at about $30,000 after a federal rebate, it’s got a range of 200 miles. That’s less than the average price of a car in the United States. This makes it the first electric car ever produced to get excellent range at a great price. It is truly “the electric car for the masses.”
Tesla is expected to follow up with a similar offering this spring.
It’s not going to replace your truck this year, but we’re pretty much reaching the point where I can actually give up my oil-consuming car and replace it with one that hardly uses any at all. And if that’s the case in 2016, it probably won’t be much past 2020 before you can replace your gas guzzling pickup with an affordable electric replacement.
Vehicle consumption currently accounts for about 70% of our oil usage in this county. The Chevy Bolt is like the first robin of spring. There are many more that will follow.
It’s time to start planning for a renewable energy future.