Elitism and energy – maybe progress is a whole lot easier when you’re rich

Elitism and energy – maybe progress is a whole lot easier when you’re rich

A funny thing happens when the price of gasoline increases and stays there for a while – people of lesser means often find themselves driving big, new-ish fuel hogs. I know, because I’ve been there. How does that work? Well, in periods of low gasoline prices, few people care about mileage and sales of big […]

Rising oil prices not only hurt at the pumps, they set up interesting anti-infrastructure wars

Rising oil prices not only hurt at the pumps, they set up interesting anti-infrastructure wars

Rising oil prices make a lot of news. In the old days, whenever it happened the affected parties were well defined – those that produced oil loved higher prices, and everyone else hated them. It was such a simple world. Now however the dynamics are much different. Consumers still hate higher gasoline prices of course, […]

Rethinking efficiency – it’s not an engineering problem, sometimes it’s a mental blockage

Rethinking efficiency – it’s not an engineering problem, sometimes it’s a mental blockage

I once read about a very clever fellow who devised an extremely simple but effective home heating system. He laid some hoses on the ground, open at one end some distance from his house, and the other ends running into the windows. He piled manure on the hoses, which decomposed as manure does and threw […]

The original green vs. the new green – like most things, the purists’ vision gets lost

The original green vs. the new green – like most things, the purists’ vision gets lost

I had a scientific and highly intelligent uncle, a curious inventor type. To the average person, he was just another kook, because the mainstream likes the mainstream for a reason. Though he could afford much more, he drove the most efficient vehicle he could find that functionally fit his needs. He knew when to shift […]

Banning gasoline-power in inner cities is a win for air quality and a non-event for fossil fuel usage

Banning gasoline-power in inner cities is a win for air quality and a non-event for fossil fuel usage

I love cars, I love driving, and I love the freedom that the automobile has brought us. There is something universally appealing about that freedom, which is the reason there are 2 billion cars on the road and climbing.   But in the heart of big cities, I hate cars and I hate driving. Cycling […]