GM CEO Dan Akerson Calls for Consumer-Driven National Energy Policy
March 7, 2013 8:33 AM
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Akerson wants a presidential commission set up to form a 30-year energy policy
GM Chairman and CEO Dan Akerson said this week that the U.S. is close to achieving long-term energy security thanks to several factors. Those factors include the
rise of fuel-efficient vehicles
, energy-efficient homes and factories, and improvement in domestic oil and gas production. Akerson also said that he believed it was time for consumer-driven national energy policy.
Akerson wants President Obama to appoint a Blue Ribbon Commission with the goal of developing a 30-year policy framework for energy security with progress reviews every five years. He believes that the commission would need to include a cross-section of energy producers and energy consumers.
Akerson made the comments when speaking at the IHS CERA Week energy conference. The executive also took the time to talk up GM's technologically diverse range of fuel-efficient vehicles, which include the
Chevrolet Cruze Clean Turbodiesel
GM also plans to help increase fuel economy by using advanced materials in the construction of their vehicles that reduce vehicle weight such as carbon fiber and magnesium. GM is even looking at better ways to construct vehicles using traditional materials such as nano steel and resistance spot welding for aluminum structures.
“A good rule of thumb is that a 10-percent reduction in curb weight will reduce fuel consumption by about 6.5 percent,” Akerson said. “Our target is to reduce weight by up to 15 percent” by 2016."
“Everywhere you look there are opportunities to seize the energy high ground,” Akerson said. “Indeed, our leaders have been presented with an historic opportunity to create a national energy policy from a position of strength and abundance.”
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RE: Consumer driven
3/7/2013 2:21:55 PM
Addiction to cars? A personal car is the best way for most people to meet their transportation needs at the lowest cost. Artificially raising the cost of transportation provides no benefits, just harms the population by making everyone poorer.
Mass transportation is subsidized so that non-riders pay up to 95% of the cost for each rider (this is about normal for light rail, buses are more like 60-80% I believe). There's a big math problem here if more people take mass transit, obviously the fewer and fewer non-riders would have to pay even more for services they don't use and/or riders would have to pay more for the rides. Trips to work, grocery store, etc. would take much more of people's free time as well. A loser of an idea all the way around, and for what benefit?
RE: Consumer driven
3/8/2013 3:08:24 AM
Huh? If more people riding mass transit (using the system closer to capacity) the cost per rider goes down, total revenue goes up, and those not using the system pay less. Not to mention other benefits like reduced traffic which reduces fuel consumption and increases productivity.
Can public transit be setup up poorly requiring huge subsidization? Definitely. A local example for me is San Jose's light rail system which has low ridership and high cost per mile, because San Jose, although highly populated, is a suburban kind of town. Basically a poor area for a light rail system.
Go up the peninsula and there is San Francisco, a 7x7 mile section of land housing almost 900,000 people. A great place to have multiple kinds of public transportation systems.
I guess my point is that you can't paint public transit as a loser idea all the way around. It works when it takes people where they want to go, at a cost that that is worth it to them.
Keep in mind that in human history driving an ICE powered vehicle has only been viable for a little over a century, due to resource constraints will probably only be viable for a most another century. New methods of transportation are invented all the time, and will continue to change as our resources and demands change with time.
"So if you want to save the planet, feel free to drive your Hummer. Just avoid the drive thru line at McDonalds." -- Michael Asher
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