I’ll resist the urge to be dramatic, but we must face facts: Oil is running out. The price is increasing on a monthly basis, and we are getting closer to running out completely.
Whether $100 a gallon comes within decades or a hundred years, even the most optimistic experts admit it’s only a matter of time before it happens.
At the moment, all big car makers are all rolling out hybrid models of their cars, with some car makers brave enough to sell all-electric models to the “lunatic fringe” who are willing to adopt them.
Tesla, Nissan and Mitsubishi both have normal-looking, all-electric cars available to purchase right now. Not surprisingly, two of those manufacturers also sell internal combustion engined vehicles, so that explains why their electric vehicle models both only have a range of 100 miles per charge.
It’s not a conspiracy, it’s just not their primary business model (yet). If you have billions invested in one particular technology that is popular and works (internal combustion engine), you’d be a fool to drop it suddenly and move to a relatively unknown technology (battery-electric) while there’s still millions to be made with your already established technology.
This also explains why the range is limited on two of those car makers. They don’t want you to stop buying their other products. Tesla on the other hand, only makes electric vehicles, so they have nothing to lose, with their current car, the Roadster, having a range of just under 250 miles per charge.
Hydrogen-powered cars seemed like a popular solution to the oil crisis too for a while, until a few scientists and bloggers started spreading a few quiet observations about the technology.
Little nuggets of wisdom like the typical price for the average fuel cell car (just under $1m each), and the curious fact that hydrogen is mostly extracted from crude oil.
Hydrogen is the most abundant element in the universe to be fair, although it’s an element that’s always stuck to something. Water’s one way to get hydrogen, but first you have to extract (seperate) it from the water. This uses a lot of electricity. I mean a LOT of electricity.
For example, if you wanted to power all the cars in the USA with hydrogen extracted from water, you’d need around 1,500 more nuclear power stations. That’s about 12 times the amount of electricity required to just drive all-electric cars.
Then there’s the fact there’s no hydrogen infrastructure. And the fact that hydrogen costs between two and five times whatever gasoline costs at that moment in time.
So in short, gas will go up again soon. It wilI hike in price, then rest, then hike again, then rest. It will not, however, come down. So be prepared to drive an electric car in the future, with hybrids being the stepping stone for the general public.
Embrace the technology early, and enjoy the many benefits of driving past the gas stations at a fraction of the cost. Silently too of course.