Currently most of our electricity is generated from nuclear energy and from fossil fuels such as coal, oil and natural gas. In the future we should transition to use of sustainable, renewable energy sources such as wind, solar, tidal and geothermal to generate clean, green, renewable electric fuel for our electric vehicles. The intermittency of sunlight and wind requires methods for electric grid balancing (i.e. ensuring that the electric supply always matches the electric demand) to help avoid electric power blackouts.
PHEVs of the future should be manufactured with flexfuel engines to enable second generation renewable biofuel to be used as their primary or sole source of liquid fuel. This would help eliminate use of dirty fossil fuels in transportation.
PHEVs using renewable fuels
Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) enable travel to be done using only renewable fuel sources (i.e. no need for fossil fuels). In the future our PHEVs should get most of their fuel (e.g. 90%) as electric fuel exclusively from renewable sources such as solar, wind, water and geothermal. Simple electric vehicles for short distance travel get 100% of their fuel from electricity. The electric grid infrastructure that is already available throughout society just needs to be extended out to recharge the electric vehicles wherever they are parked (i.e. charging at work, charging at home, charging at public parking).
Whenever the dual fuel PHEVs need to travel beyond the capacity of their batteries and the recharging infrastructure, then they can be fueled (e.g. 10%) with renewable liquid biofuels made from crop residues, algae, etc. We cannot produce enough biofuel for all of our vehicle travel needs, but when all short distance vehicle travel is fueled with electricity, then long-distance travel by PHEVs could easily be fueled with biofuel. In the US and many other countries the gasoline supply already contains 10% biofuel, so all we need to do is eliminate the gasoline and use our existing liquid fuel infrastructure to supply pure liquid biofuel for PHEVs whenever they need to travel long distances.
Fossil fuels and their CO2 greenhouse gas pollution problems could be completely eliminated from the transportation sector using PHEVs and renewable energy technologies that are available today. The electric vehicles we have today will become the low emissions vehicles we need when they are fueled exclusively with renewable electricity and renewable biofuel. (Biofuels absorb CO2 when they are produced to compensate for the CO2 that is released when they are burned.) Renewable fuels enable simple electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles to become the vehicles of the future for a clean, green, sustainable society.
PEVs and Solar Power
Solar photovoltaic (PV) panels on home & business rooftops and on parking lot structures are increasingly used for charging of all plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs, BEVs, PHEVs). This is known as the PV4EV strategy. During the initial payback time the solar panels reduce the monthly electricity costs to eventually repay the costs of installing the solar panels. After that time owners get many years of no-cost electricity for running their electric vehicles, homes and businesses.
- 2015.02.19 - NRG & Kaiser Marry Solar & Health Interests | CleanTechnica
- 2014.12.24 - Solar power and electric cars make suburban living awesome - Washington Post wonkblog
- 2014.12.23 - Living the EV/PV Dream: How I Chose to Pair My Solar System With an Electric Car : Greentech Media
- 2014.12.11 - Aussie Solar Pioneer To Test Combo Of Tesla EV + PV + Storage - cleantechnica
- 2014.11.20 - EV Owners Going Solar Save Money While Donating to Sierra Club | PV Solar Report
- 2014.07.14 - This Is Why It Makes Sense to Pair Solar With Electric Vehicles : Greentech Media
- 2012.06.28 - Why Use Rooftop Solar Panels to Power Your Electric Vehicle? | The Energy Collective
Using the PHEV to Transition from Fossil Fuel to Renewable Energy
Dr. Andrew A. Frank (2014). The PHEV or plug-in hybrid electric vehicle is proposed to solve the transition from gasoline and diesel fossil fuels to use of electricity for fueling our vehicles. Use of renewable electricity and a small amount of renewable liquid biofuel in the PHEV enables transportation with ZERO net CO2 greenhouse gas pollution. (Biofuels absorb CO2 when they are produced to offset the CO2 that is released when they are burned.)
The battery in the PHEV can be recharged at low electric power rates since most private vehicles are used only 3 to 4 hours a day. This means that there are up to 20 hours of time each day to charge the vehicles at the home and workplace locations where they are likely to be parked the longest. With this much time they can be charged with ordinary household electricity and Level 1 electric chargers at 1kW to 1.4 kW to satisfy the drivers' average daily needs. If a driver needs more fuel to drive a longer distance, then the dual fuel PHEV simply switches automatically to use liquid fuel when the battery runs low.
Green World Rising is a series of four films on the state of climate and solutions to the climate crisis.
Episode 1 - Carbon - shows how we can keep carbon in the ground through putting a price on carbon.
Episode 2 - Last Hours - is about the real threat of the release of methane from the melting arctic, thus triggering an extreme climate change event.
Episode 3 - Green World Rising - shows our pathway forward through renewable technology that decentralizes the current power grid.
Episode 4 - Restoration - discusses how the earth's natural ecosystems deal with climate and how we can work with nature to turn the tide.
- renewable energy "electric vehicle" - Google News
- ScienceDaily: Renewable Energy News
- Clean Power News | CleanTechnica
- Renewable Energy News - renewableenergyworld
- Green News | Green Technology | VentureBeat
- Renewable - Power Engineering
- Renewable Energy Magazine
- Electric Hybrid vehicles - Renewable Energy Magazine
- renewable energy - Huffington Post Search
- 2013.08.11 - Renewable energy, not fracking, is the best choice for California - Sacramento Bee "The oil and gas industry is lobbying hard to expand hydraulic fracturing – a dangerous process commonly known as fracking – into the Central Valley's world-class agricultural lands, and there's no shortage of controversy over the projected impacts."
- 2013.08.01 - Drill for energy? Yes, for more geothermal - Sacramento Bee "Let's ask why we aren't doing more drilling for another of California's golden resources, geothermal energy – which doesn't require fracking and doesn't have the myriad environmental consequences that come with natural gas."
- 2013.07.23 - Wind Energy Now Cost Competitive With Coal in India - IEEE Spectrum
- 2013.07.19 - Straight from the sun: The renewables revolution has landed : Renew Economy 19july2013
- 2013.07.17 - Why consumers say electric cars and green energy go together : Renew Economy 17july2013
- 2013.07.17 - Green with anger: The future is now for electric vehicles - Chicago Tribune 17july2013
- 2013.07.16 - Next-gen wind turbines with storage are cheap, reliable and brilliant : Renew Economy
- 2013.07.10 - Electric vehicles prove more popular when green energy is available - Augoblog Green 10july2013
- 2013.06.14 - US Energy Department creates roadmap to foster geothermal development - Renewable Energy Magazine
- 2013.04.23 - 100 Percent Renewable Energy is 100 Percent Possible | The Energy Collective 23april2013
- 2012.08.26 - Solar-Powered Electric Vehicle Charger Unveiled - CleanTechnica "An intriguing solar-powered electric vehicle charger has been created and recently unveiled by Princeton Satellite Systems in Plainsboro, New Jersey. Called a SunStation, it employs solar panels to recharge electric vehicles"
- 2012.08.14 - GE, Urban Green Energy set up first integrated, wind-powered EV charging station "GE and Urban Green Energy might not be the first to install a wind-powered EV charging station ... The partnership just installed the first Sanya Skypump just outside of Barcelona to serve corporate and government drivers with truly clean energy"
- 2011.06.01 - Oregon to install electric-vehicle chargers along I-5 | Green Tech - CNET News "The electric-vehicle chargers are part of Oregon's "Green Highway" project, which was funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009."
- 2010.01.00 - Green Power for Electric Cars - Transport & Environment "In the coming decades, electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles could play a significant role in this move towards sustainable transport. If these vehicles run on renewable electricity, they could substantially cut CO2 emissions and improve local air quality. Electric vehicles might even help to make the electricity sector more sustainable, if the batteries in the vehicles could be used to manage the variable output of an increasing share of wind and solar-based power generation."
- 2009.06.17 - The Future of Energy: A Realist's Roadmap to 2050 | Popular Science
- 2008.12.03 - Hawaii makes electric car part of green power initiative | Ars Technica "the state announced an ambitious program that would see it obtain 70 percent of its power from renewable sources by 2030."
Hawaii Renewable Energy Roadmap
Hawaii is working towards becoming a leader in use of electric vehicles fueled with local renewable energy.
- Fifteen Year Roadmap for Sustainable Energy in Hawaii 30jan2012 Watson and Frank describe their plan for Hawaii to transition from using imported fossil fuels to electricity generated from local renewable energy (sun and wind). Gasoline-fueled vehicles would be replaced with plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs). These PHEVs would be fueled with renewable electricity for all short distance travel. Whenever travel distances exceed the capacity of the vehicle's battery, then the PHEVs would use liquid biofuels for long distance travel. This would provide a sustainable energy economy without sacrifices in lifestyle.
- Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Stations in Hawaii - Hawaii State Energy Office "To reduce Hawaii’s dependence on fossil fuel, the State of Hawaii has set a goal of achieving 70% clean energy by 2030. This undertaking will require transforming its current energy production and consumption. A key component to reducing fuel demand and utilizing locally produced renewable energy will be a vibrant plug in electric vehicle (EV) market and Hawaii is looking toward EVs to build a clean transportation future. The widespread deployment of EVs in Hawaii is a key approach toward the reduction of fossil fuel dependency and Hawaii’s drivers have enthusiastically adopted EVs as their mode of transportation."
- Hawaii's Energy Future - Electric Vehicle "Even if the electricity comes primarily from oil, as it does in Hawaii at present, switching to electric vehicles will use substantially less oil at lower cost to reach the same level of mobility. Using electricity in millions of vehicles would substantially reduce the greenhouse gas emissions of the transportation sector with only a modest increase in the emissions of the electrical sector. If renewable energy is used instead of fossil fuels, the benefits will be even greater." Latest developments, Benefits of electric vehicles, Hawaiian Electric companies’ present EV activities, The commitment, Why move to electric vehicles?, EV History in Hawaii
- Electric Cars in Hawaii - Honolulu Civil Beat "Hawaii is considered an ideal spot to introduce electric vehicles because the size of the islands limits driving distances and the state has some of the highest gas prices in the nation. The state's mix of renewable power sources, including wind, geothermal and solar, is another draw, because it means that the overall carbon footprint of electric vehicles here would be lower than in many other parts of the country. Hawaii stands to benefit as an early adopter of electric cars. The move would help the state achieve its goals in the Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative, which aims to reduce the state’s dependence on imported oil for power and transportation."
- Biofuels Study, Final Report to the Legislature, In Accordance with Act 203, Session Laws of Hawaii, 2011 - files.hawaii.gov pdf "Hawaii’s liquid fuel needs may be met by a combination of petroleum-based and renewable fuels (i.e. biofuels) made from organic (biogenetic) materials such as plants. Biofuels are produced worldwide, including some production in Hawaii. According to local sources, major barriers to local production include price and investment risk; feedstock availability; and lack of long-term leases for large tracts of contiguous land areas."
- Electric Vehicles | Honolulu Clean Cities "A key component to reducing fuel demand and utilizing locally produced renewable energy will be a vibrant plug in electric vehicle (EV) market and Hawaii is looking toward EV’s to build a clean transportation future." Local Programs and Partners, Local Resources, Local Publications.
- California Center for Sustainable Energy
- Green Power Network - DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy "news and information on green power markets and related activities. The site provides up-to-date information on green power providers, product offerings, consumer protection issues, and policies affecting green power markets."
- ChargePortland: electric cars, electric vehicles (EVs) and charging stations in Portland, Oregon "The City has developed a strategy to address the many issues around adoption of this new technology: "Electric Vehicles- The Portland Way” was adopted by the Portland City Council on July 20, 2010." "Climate Action Plan ... sets in place our community’s ambitious sustainability roadmap to cut our greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by the year 2050."
- Running on Green Power! - Gouvernement du Québec "working now to make a much bigger place in Québec’s transportation system for electric vehicles. This action is also motivated by a desire to replace petroleum with renewable energy. Québec more than anyone else can use its hydroelectricity — a clean and renewable energy source — for transportation purposes."
- Green Riverside - Green Power Premium " is a voluntary program available to all RPU electric customers interested in helping Riverside achieve and surpass its renewable energy goals. As we work together to develop energy resources like wind, solar, geothermal, and biomass, we reduce our use of fossil fuels like coal, oil, and natural gas. This is how we'll achieve a green energy future."
- Policies plug into electric vehicle future | Renewable Northwest Project "Transportation is one of the leading causes of greenhouse gas emissions in Oregon. Plug-in electric vehicles offer an exciting solution. They have no tailpipe emissions, making them cleaner to operate than any conventional vehicle. The shift toward electric vehicle adoption, though, is just the first step. Here in Oregon, we can encourage the development and use of technology that enables the charging of electric vehicles with 100 percent renewable energy, so they generally can be zero-emissions vehicles and not powered by an energy mix that includes dirty fossil fuels."
- Running on Green Power - ACTION PLAN FOR ELECTRIC VEHICLES - government of Québec " 'As the world's fourth-largest producer of hydroelectricity, which is a green and renewable form of energy, Québec has a number of assets that will help stimulate the use of electric vehicles within its territory and make the shift towards a less oil-dependent economy,' said Minister Normandeau."
- Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS)
- Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS)
See more about: Zero Emission Vehicles