24 September 2010

Your New Car And Its Fuel


The oil powering your car does likewise for the truck, train, ship and aeroplane that brings food and a myriad other goods to you. The problem is it is a limited resource. In 1980, extraction of oil from the earth started to exceed new discoveries, meaning we were confronted with the reality of running out in the foreseeable future.

So then the car industry starting turning to alternative fuels to save this precious commodity. Yeah, right. In fact the industry put the whole thing in the too hard basket, as if by ignoring it, the issue would go away. It didn't, obviously. Now it is estimated we are about to reach a critical point, where demand goes beyond production. That will cause petrol and diesel prices to soar, causing transportation costs to be drastically affected. This could cause great economic upheavals. Now the car industry is frantically seeking other ways to power our cars. They cannot find anything to match what petroleum yields.

I bought a new car five years ago. It is small and relatively efficient. I could buy a new car but I thought by now I would be looking at something to deliver much more than my car's 39mpg (US) or 47mpg (UK) or 6L per 100km. I could only buy about the same as I already have for petrol use. I am planning to wait until I can get a car that is doing something really different from what I have, at a price that is somewhat comparable. I am going to have a long wait.

The bottom line: It is just as well I own a reliable car with plenty left in it.

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