What have you done today to lower your impact?

We are washing away the foundations of our existence on every front. It is high time we move from crashing about on the planet like a bull in china shop and find a way to go forward with intent. We must find systems of living based on sustainability. The systems and tools exist, it is up to each of us to adopt them.

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Sunday, 1 March 2009

Electric transportation in Bermuda

I test drove this EVT 4000e a few days ago. It handles and accelerates just like a fossil fuel powered bike but quietly without any exhaust. The lithium battery pack will go for nearly 100 miles and costs about $1 to charge. Clearly widespread adoption of electric vehicles in Bermuda would mean a significant reduction in emissions and a major improvement in quality of life due to noise abatement.

However, it would do very little to end Bermuda's dependence on fossil fuels as the grid is almost entirely powered with petrochemicals. it would merely shift the demand from thousands highly inefficient internal combustion engines, an ancient technology that must be phased out, to one centrally located polluting oil and diesel burning power plant.

Bermuda has abundant renewable resources in the sun, the wind and the ocean currents flowing past the island offshore. The problem is phasing them in with the existing sources, the power plant and an incinerator. As with any renewable generation, it quite often is generating when you don't need it. It needs to be stored. The obvious solution is to use thousands of vehicles to store it. It's called vehicle to grid technology. Each vehicle is capable of being used as a flexible power source by the grid when needed. This requires a smart grid and lots of electric vehicles. To encourage electric vehicles without a V2G system is to ignore the opportunity to establish energy independence away from fossil fuels. The only other responsible options are for every owner to have his/her own off grid renewably powered station at their home or for someone to set up PV or wind powered stations with spare batteries. Buildings with large employee base could do the same for their parking areas.

These ideas apply to wherever electric vehicles are to be rolled out in any great number, not just Bermuda. Bermuda is fortunate enough to be blessed with abundant resources, a small population and just one electricity provider to get on board. V2G makes so much sense here. In the states widespread adoption of electric vehicles would mean a large increase in demand on the grid that for the near future would mean more coal fired power plants. The planet can't afford that. We can no longer accept half measures. We need a smart grid, huge deployment of renewables, electric vehicles, and V2G. These are technologies already developed and tested. We do not need to wait any longer. Bermudians, Americans, the world should demand these changes.

Check out Project Get Ready for information about planning and implementing smart Grid and V2G technology.

Read more about Vehicle to Grid.

See Green House Bermuda for more information about the electric scooter.

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