Should Cars be more efficient?
Dependence of man on the environment (SCI207)
March 4, 2013
There are many things that have gone into shaping the society we live in today. The fabric of our culture has changed and changed again in response to new additions which have woven their way into our lives. But, none has affected our society as deeply as the automobile. From the way we work and play to how we design the buildings we call home, the automobile has created in many ways a car culture with its own status symbols. However, while the automobile has changed the lives of us all in a positive light; this does comes with a price, and the price is our ...view middle of the document...
Based on a report from the U.S. Department of Energy; a traditional car from 2007 uses 344.8 gallons of gasoline to drive 10,000 miles. A hybrid car from the same year uses only 263.2 gallons of gas for the same distance. In addition, the same report showed that a hybrid car produced only 294 grams of carbon dioxide per mile. That's 158 less than a traditional vehicle.) http://www.ehow.com/facts_4829050_environmental-benefits-hybrid-cars.html. However, there are some cons to owning a hybrid like cost and being too quiet for the blind, pedestrians and cyclist. Important pedestrian safety issues have emerged with the advent of hybrid and electric vehicles. These vehicles are relatively quiet—they do not emit the sounds pedestrians and bicyclists are accustomed to hearing as a vehicle approaches them on the street or at an intersection. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081117091633.htm.
Just like hybrid cars; Electric cars also has pros and cons to ownership. A pro would be that Electric cars help reduce greenhouse gases and smog. “Electric cars, advocates say, are harbingers of a green, emission-free future, helping cut greenhouse gases and smog. Yet the environmental benefits of electric vehicles will be limited for years because most will be recharged by electricity produced by coal- and gas-fired power plants.” (Ramsey, M. (2010, Oct 18). And a greenhouse gas is any gas, such as carbon dioxide, or methane, that traps large amounts of heat from the sun in an atmosphere. Global warming takes place when these greenhouse gases accumulate in the atmosphere which makes the average temperature on Earth warmer. The obvious con of owning an Electric car is that, Electric cars come with a high price tag, and aren’t much different than hybrid cars. “That means the ecological gain from driving an all-electric car -- and putting up with its high cost, recharging time and limited driving range -- likely won't be much greater than driving a hybrid gas-electric vehicle” (Ramsey, M. (2010, Oct 18). Another negative of owning an electric vehicle is the fact that once you run out of power, you are out; and with the few amount of electric stations of the street to re-power doesn’t help.
Now, let’s move on to Diesel vehicles of the past, and the future. Diesel vehicles of the past where they omit more PM and discharge large amounts of NOx into the atmosphere are over. Diesel vehicles have introduced new technology that makes the new diesel eco-friendly.
“What’s new in these cars is the use of a urea fluid, or nitrogenous compound, called AdBlue, which is squirted into the engine’s exhaust stream to scrub pollutants away. “The air coming out is typically cleaner than the air going in,” says Volkswagen Product Manager Bret Scott. (Vizard, F, 2010) Diesel vehicles are no different than gasoline powered vehicles, and in some cases they are worse because of the large amounts of NOx discharged. “A major difference...