Part of the events at the Electric Drive Transportation Association’s conference here in Washington DC was a press conference in which a few dozen of the currently- and soon-to-be-available EVs were displayed outside the Department of Energy Building. Energy Secretary Steven Chu, Rep. Edward Markey (D-Mass.) and a few others spoke to an enthusiastic audience.
Markey is obviously very bright, and has the quick wit one expects of a Congressman who thinks of himself as progressive. “Many people have a theological belief in our abundance of oil. The problem is that oil isn’t about theology; it’s about geology. We have less than 2% of the world’s oil, while consuming about 25% of it.”
He also reminded us of George W. Bush’s and Condoleezza Rice’s trip to Saudi Arabia a few years ago, the purpose of which was a request for a reduction in oil prices. In exchange for the Saudis’ agreement to consider the idea, we agreed to sell them nuclear energy generation equipment (as if they need it, sitting on all that oil, with their own gasoline at 9 cents a gallon).
“This was one of the low points in US history,” Markey told us, looking at his feet solemnly. “When Kennedy was president, he told Khrushchev, ‘We will use technology to dominate you in the Space Race.’ Why couldn’t Bush have done that? Why can’t we simply commit to innovating and developing technology that will establish our leadership in the field of energy? So much of this is right here, in our hands today. The electric vehicles you see here today are a lethal weapon in our fight to end our oil addiction.”
Something to think about.