The best plan is to have solar cars. But, since the corporations that control our energy need compensation, plug-in hybrids are a good way to combat global warming, as long as the energy provided for the plug-ins uses a renewable and non-polluting source, such as wind or even hydrogen gas.
Not one power plan has been taken off-line because of solar, wind or other renewable sources because the power generated can't be stored. When most people have vehicles with large batteries there will be renewable energy storage capacity. Change the power grid, change the storage, change the world. When the government passes out electrical vehicle rebates, any one getting that rebate should sign-off on allowing there battery to be used for renewable energy storage. The car manufactures should receive something, for allowing a battery under warranty to be grid-tied...maybe battery warranty can be given the the power generators. Lower vehicle cost, provide a public good.
Not only do plug-in hybrids have the ability to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, they also require no fossil fuel, and they can help improve our nation's energy security. The benefits offered by plug-in hybrids are numerous and, because of this, they are a very efficient choice in the fight against global warming.
Vehicles are a leading contributor of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere, leading to global warming. A shift to electric vehicles would not only help with that, but also lead the country away from dependence on foreign oil. Perhaps, then, we could conserve our military for defense only, rather than policing the world to ensure our own oil supply.
Plug-in vehicles don't end pollution. Much of our electricity comes from coal powered plants, which create a great deal of pollution as well. Ideally, we will find a renewable source for our electricity, which has the potential to make a plug-in hybrid pollution free. Even if there isn't global warming, pollution is harmful to our health and needs to be curbed greatly for the benefit of all.
With nations that must drive a lot, I believe that plug-in hybrids, assuming they are cost-efficient, should be part of a plan to reduce global warming. America has high CO2 emissions because we are a nation that is very spread out, with limited public transportation, except for a few major cities. With plug-in hybrids, we would still be able to use our cars, but leave less of an environmental footprint.
The auto industry is market-based. People decide what they want to buy, and the auto industry will, and must, comply in order to stay in business. This means that it is relatively easy to start this particular "snowball" rolling, and that it will likely keep gathering momentum with just a few extra nudges from the government, in the form of tax breaks for the buyers and manufacturers of plug-in cars.
One additional nudge from the government might be to encourage, in some way, the establishment of a grid of electric outlets for plug-in cars to use. This is essential in order to allow the full use of plug-in cars on longer trips, and could present a major stumbling block if it does not happen in a timely way. Access to electric outlets should match the minimum miles that a vehicle can travel on one charge. If we get the range of electric cars to 100 miles, then we need access to one "outlet" every 100 miles in every direction.
Similar innovations are needed to convert diesel burning trucks and buses to electric power.
This is, of course, only one aspect of our lives we must change to preserve our world.
A plug-in hybrid car can definitely be one of the first steps in fighting the battle against air pollution and global warming. However buying a plug-in hybrid car will not alone save the world. More education needs to be available to the public about the car's benefits, cost, and availability.
They reduce emissions and that is the name of the game. Obviously plug-ins are only a part of the global effort to control global warming, but they are at least helping decrease emissions, which is a major contributor to this growing problem.
When I first heard of hybrids, I never thought that they could drastically change the way our society lives. If every person drove one of these cars, global warming would disappear. Our health would also be much better since pollution rates would go down. I think that the government should put major tax breaks into the purchase of these cars for the new year.
Hybrids use a combination of electric and fossil fuel. The fuel combustion engine is efficient, but what they don't tell you is that most of the electric power generated uses fossil fuels, like coal. Plug in your car onto the electric grid, and you are using electricity powered by fossil fuels. The irony is that you may be running your fuel-efficient hybrid cars, thinking you are saving the environment. But, the battery is being recharged by either the engine of your car, or the power of electric grid. How can you be saving your environment if you end up requiring more power plants to be built to satisfy this new requirement? The answer is simple. More efficient engines, using whatever fuel available, is the real answer. The more we can squeeze out of our engines, the better we can combat global warming.
If there is global warming I believe that it is cyclical and not caused by man. Plug-in hybrids could be a good vehicle for some people, especially those who have short commutes to and from work. I think research and development should continue on alternative forms of energy and ways to more cheaply power vehicles, but I reject the premise of the question.
Doing something simple as pushing plug-in hybrid vehicles to combat global warming is not a viable solution. This issue has been going on for so long, and so much damage has already been done (and continues to be done) that a small act like changing our vehicles will not be the answer. The human race needs to make a drastic change in our cities, buildings, and businesses first.
Plug-in hybrids do not combat global warming because most electricity is generated from fossil fuel. The charging process has a large carbon footprint. Economically, plug-in hybrids are not practical. Because of the high initial investment, cost of recharging and cost of replacement batteries, it takes over ten years for a hybrid to be as economical as a standard internal combustion engine. Regardless of how good a product is, the public will only accept it if it produces benefits equal to the cost. The benefits of plug-in hybrids do not justify the cost.
Global warming (and cooling) has occurred throughout all of time. It is my firm opinion that global warming is being used as a way for politicians and companies to have more money and power. Al Gore, the main global warming activist, has earned millions and millions from advocating global warming. There has been a lot of controversy on supposed global warming data and within the last year we even saw the so called "Climategate" which was the leaking of thousands of documents showing data manipulated by several climatologists. A plug-in hybrid car should be used by people who want to pay less for gas and those who buy them in an effort to combat 'global warming' are allowing companies to seriously capitalize and take advantage of them; all for a cause which does not exist.
Plug in hybrids still utilize resources that contribute to global warming. By charging the car you are using electric, and electric plants use oil. Then the gas part of the engine still uses gas. Hybrids are just a Band-aid to try and fix a problem that needs pressure bandages and stitches!
If we are going to be looking at transportation technology for fixing the planet then we shouldn't be looking for anything that doesn't operate naturally. What this means is that we should be focusing on technologies that are entirely 'green' such as solar energy, wind energy, biomass, hydro-electric. Plug-in hybrids will be greatly exceeded by these other technologies for effectiveness and environmental soundness in the end.
Firstly Global warming is an unsupported theory that to date has more evidence disproving its existence. That being said I am not adverse to the development of alternative fuel sources. Unfortunately battery-powered cars are not the solution we hoped for. Firstly they require electric power to recharge the batteries. This power is produced mainly by coal fired power stations which are pollutants in their own rite. Secondly there is the issue of manufacture and disposal of a biohazard battery..
Far more energy is wasted by producing food products derived from animals than from vehicle use. The energy savings by switching from an average American diet to a vegan diet is far more per year than stopping the average individual's vehicle use. Energy is also wasted unnecessarily by eating out-of-season foods and relying on cheap important products, most of which are made from petroleum. We need to focus on taxing all types of energy waste; Right now, in stores in Boston, bananas from Ecuador are much cheaper than apples from 10 miles out of Boston. Product prices need to better reflect energy used.
Combating global warming will only occur by optimizing the latest technology for a wide spread media. By making it cheaper, a person can do his part with simply upgrading to a less gas reliant vehicle. If a man is paying .10 a gallon he will not deal with a 2.00 gallon gar. Its the economics that is prohibiting the combating terms of global warming.