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Prius Outdoes Hummer in Environmental Damage
The Recorder-Central Connecticut State University ^ | March 7, 2007 | Chris Demorro

Posted on 03/14/2007 2:00:06 PM PDT by tcrlaf

The Toyota Prius has become the flagship car for those in our society so environmentally conscious that they are willing to spend a premium to show the world how much they care.

Unfortunately for them, their ultimate ‘green car’ is the source of some of the worst pollution in North America; it takes more combined energy per Prius to produce than a Hummer.

Before we delve into the seedy underworld of hybrids, you must first understand how a hybrid works. For this, we will use the most popular hybrid on the market, the Toyota Prius.

The Prius is powered by not one, but two engines: a standard 76 horsepower, 1.5-liter gas engine found in most cars today and a battery- powered engine that deals out 67 horsepower and a whooping 295ft/lbs of torque, below 2000 revolutions per minute.

Essentially, the Toyota Synergy Drive system, as it is so called, propels the car from a dead stop to up to 30mph. This is where the largest percent of gas is consumed. As any physics major can tell you, it takes more energy to get an object moving than to keep it moving. The battery is recharged through the braking system, as well as when the gasoline engine takes over anywhere north of 30mph. It seems like a great energy efficient and environmentally sound car, right?

You would be right if you went by the old government EPA estimates, which netted the Prius an incredible 60 miles per gallon in the city and 51 miles per gallon on the highway.

Unfortunately for Toyota, the government realized how unrealistic their EPA tests were, which consisted of highway speeds limited to 55mph and acceleration of only 3.3 mph per second.

The new tests which affect all 2008 models give a much more realistic rating with highway speeds of 80mph and acceleration of 8mph per second.

This has dropped the Prius’s EPA down by 25 percent to an average of 45mpg. This now puts the Toyota within spitting distance of cars like the Chevy Aveo, which costs less then half what the Prius costs.

However, if that was the only issue with the Prius, I wouldn’t be writing this article. It gets much worse.

Building a Toyota Prius causes more environmental damage than a Hummer that is on the road for three times longer than a Prius.

As already noted, the Prius is partly driven by a battery which contains nickel. The nickel is mined and smelted at a plant in Sudbury, Ontario. This plant has caused so much environmental damage to the surrounding environment that NASA has used the ‘dead zone’ around the plant to test moon rovers.

The area around the plant is devoid of any life for miles.

The plant is the source of all the nickel found in a Prius’ battery and Toyota purchases 1,000 tons annually. Dubbed the Superstack, the plague-factory has spread sulfur dioxide across northern Ontario, becoming every environmentalist’s nightmare.

“The acid rain around Sudbury was so bad it destroyed all the plants and the soil slid down off the hillside,” said Canadian Greenpeace energy-coordinator David Martin during an interview with Mail, a British-based newspaper.

All of this would be bad enough in and of itself; however, the journey to make a hybrid doesn’t end there. The nickel produced by this disastrous plant is shipped via massive container ship to the largest nickel refinery in Europe.

From there, the nickel hops over to China to produce ‘nickel foam.’ From there, it goes to Japan.

Finally, the completed batteries are shipped to the United States, finalizing the around-the-world trip required to produce a single Prius battery. Are these not sounding less and less like environmentally sound cars and more like a farce?

Wait, I haven’t even got to the best part yet.

When you pool together all the combined energy it takes to drive and build a Toyota Prius, the flagship car of energy fanatics, it takes almost 50 percent more energy than a Hummer - the Prius’s arch nemesis.

Through a study by CNW Marketing called “Dust to Dust,” the total combined energy is taken from all the electrical, fuel, transportation, materials (metal, plastic, etc) and hundreds of other factors over the expected lifetime of a vehicle. The Prius costs an average of $3.25 per mile driven over a lifetime of 100,000 miles - the expected lifespan of the Hybrid.

The Hummer, on the other hand, costs a more fiscal $1.95 per mile to put on the road over an expected lifetime of 300,000 miles. That means the Hummer will last three times longer than a Prius and use less combined energy doing it.

So, if you are really an environmentalist - ditch the Prius. Instead, buy one of the most economical cars available - a Toyota Scion xB. The Scion only costs a paltry $0.48 per mile to put on the road. If you are still obsessed over gas mileage - buy a Chevy Aveo and fix that lead foot.

One last fun fact for you: it takes five years to offset the premium price of a Prius. Meaning, you have to wait 60 months to save any money over a non-hybrid car because of lower gas expenses.


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Government
KEYWORDS: climatechange; energy; environmentalism; globalwarming; haha; hype; pollution; prius; saintalgore
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To: flynmudd

Their fun to cut off on the Freeway, it's not like their ever going to catch you! Basically an expensive Yugo.

Pray for W and Our Troops


51 posted on 03/14/2007 3:49:47 PM PDT by bray (Redeploy to Tehran)
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To: Ditto
the only reason to buy either is for ego trips. They're just off to different ego destinations

Excellent point.

52 posted on 03/14/2007 3:53:03 PM PDT by doorgunner69
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To: SFC Chromey

How long does the battery last in the Prius, and how much will it cost to replace?
The Toyota Prius battery is designed to last the lifetime of the vehicle and considering that the Prius is designed to be as durable as any other Toyota, and considering Toyota's reputation, that is a pretty long time. Toyota have lab data showing the Prius battery can do 180,000 miles (290,000km) of normal driving with absolutely no degradation of the battery's performance. To give some real life examples, there is a Vancouver taxi driver, Andrew Grant, who has done over 320,000km in his Prius taxi and another Canadian taxi driver Jatinder Parhar who has traveled over 410,000km in his Toyota Prius Generation II Prius taxi. Neither of them has had to do anything to their Toyota Prius taxis other than standard servicing. (click to read more here). Toyota have stated in a recent press release that they have sold over 100,000 Generation II Prius in the USA and have never had to replace a battery due to wear and tear. (click here to read Toyota Press release). Given all this, the price of a replacement battery is probably irrelevant, however in the extremely unlikely event you needed to replace the battery in your Prius, current cost, at time of writing (Oct 2006), is NZ$4000.00 for a Generation II Prius and NZ$2750 for a Generation III Prius. However this is coming down all the time. When we first looked into this at 2 years ago the battery packs were priced at $7000 each. We believe the price will fall to around $2000 within a year or so given the increased production of Hybrid Vehicles using this type of battery. For piece of mind every Toyota Prius brought from The Clean Green Car Company is covered by a 2 year, unlimited km Hybrid Car Warranty that includes cover for the battery pack.

Another opinion..


53 posted on 03/14/2007 3:56:09 PM PDT by bkepley
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To: tcrlaf

ping self to forward to all my Prius owning friends in the bay area....lol. They will deny everything of course and mine will be an exercise in futility.


54 posted on 03/14/2007 3:57:14 PM PDT by Bogeygolfer
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To: tcrlaf

Me, I'm partial to late '70s GM trucks. I figure that by reusing an existing truck, that's one less vehicle that needs to be built. Since these trucks have passed through several pairs of hands by now (in most cases), or been held on to by owners who don't see the point in fixing what ain't broke, that's several new vehicles that overall weren't needed. I am reducing the amount of pollution generated overall, and more than offsetting anything the truck might generate as I drive it (I am assuming, like this article, that producing a vehicle creates more pollution than the vehicle itself will generate in its lifetime).


55 posted on 03/14/2007 4:03:02 PM PDT by Little Pig (Is it time for "Cowboys and Muslims" yet?)
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To: tcrlaf
The new tests which affect all 2008 models give a much more realistic rating with highway speeds of 80mph

I'm not sure the new test is realistic at all. All the Priuses (Priui?) that I've passed on the highway looked like they were straining to stay at 65. Can they really get up to 80 short of being dropped out of an airplane without a chute?

56 posted on 03/14/2007 4:08:34 PM PDT by PAR35
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To: tcrlaf

bump


57 posted on 03/14/2007 4:10:02 PM PDT by SauronOfMordor (Never try to teach a pig to sing -- it wastes your time and it annoys the pig)
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To: PAR35
I'm not sure the new test is realistic at all. All the Priuses (Priui?) that I've passed on the highway looked like they were straining to stay at 65. Can they really get up to 80 short of being dropped out of an airplane without a chute?

Yes and certainly much more comfortably than the Subaru and small pickups I've owned.

58 posted on 03/14/2007 4:10:17 PM PDT by bkepley
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To: bkepley
in his Toyota Prius Generation II Prius taxi.

That has to be one of the least suitable cars for a taxi. Better than a Golf, but not much else.

covered by a 2 year, unlimited km Hybrid Car Warranty that includes cover for the battery pack.

Sounds like the battery is good for a little over 2 years. My current car is closing in on 18 years. That's the equivalent of 9 battery pack warranties.

59 posted on 03/14/2007 4:16:20 PM PDT by PAR35
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To: PAR35
Sounds like the battery is good for a little over 2 years. My current car is closing in on 18 years. That's the equivalent of 9 battery pack warranties.

No it sounds like the warranty for that particular car is good for two years. Surely you didn't have an 18 year warranty.

60 posted on 03/14/2007 4:18:53 PM PDT by bkepley
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To: bkepley

I'll take your word for it. All the ones I've seen on the highway I've had to pass. If you pass me, give a wave.


61 posted on 03/14/2007 4:19:14 PM PDT by PAR35
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To: greenthumbedislndr
cadilladic converter? It's called a catalytic converter for cryin out loud!

Wot the Heck do you foreners know, anyhow? I is so angry I cut myownself shaving and had to get a septic stick to stop the bleed you caused me.

Jus FYI, it's called a Cadilladic Converter, and ifn y'all don't believe me, look under a frickin Cadillac, OK? And have your Green Card ready.

62 posted on 03/14/2007 4:19:34 PM PDT by Kenny Bunk (Hillary: A sociopath's enabler in the White House?)
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To: bkepley
Surely you didn't have an 18 year warranty.

No, but it was longer than 2 years.

It is about time for my annual oil change.

63 posted on 03/14/2007 4:24:46 PM PDT by PAR35
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To: tcrlaf

In addition to all stated above:

Toyota speedometers have been proven to over state the miles moved by 2+%.

So, you haven't traveled 60 miles on your gallon of gas-even if the car's power system would do that. You have only travel about 59 miles. Does this sound like a nothing? Maybe- but- if you are trying to use your warranty or are driving a lease car, you are getting to the end of your warranty BEFORE you have actually traveled that far. You are piling up more miles on your lease car, and the penalties for overage are onerous. The mileage is not near as stated.
Summary:
You pay a premium for a piss-ant little car that can get blown off the road in the backdraft of a triple truck/trailer/trailer like we have here in Nevada and other states.
You do NOT get the mileage they promise. Loss of bragging rights at the water cooler!!!
You wear out your warranty prematurely.
You eat us your lease prematurely.
God forbid you try to cross some of the wide open spaces here in Nevada or Wyoming or Montana.
Lotsa luck.
PS LOVE my truck. Will give up something else to drive my truck.
PPS It's paid for!!!


64 posted on 03/14/2007 4:26:01 PM PDT by ridesthemiles
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To: alice_in_bubbaland

Is there a pool for when good old Gore will allow someone to bring this to everyone's attention at his next appearance??????

Count me in for : NEVER!!


65 posted on 03/14/2007 4:29:13 PM PDT by ridesthemiles
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To: PAR35
Surely you didn't have an 18 year warranty. No, but it was longer than 2 years.

Yeah so is mine. I'm not sure why these guys have some rinky-dink warranty.

It is about time for my annual oil change.

LOL..I'll have to calculate how many years my warranty is worth at that rate of driving..lessee..about 30 years.

66 posted on 03/14/2007 4:29:52 PM PDT by bkepley
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To: Thrusher

This is so awesome. Someone please go kick Leo DiCaprio in the nuts for me."

Isn't Ed Begley on the same Prius bandwagon???

I don't think either Begley or Darryl Hannah ever go more than 20 miles from their domiciles except for Limos to the sirport, etc.


67 posted on 03/14/2007 4:32:13 PM PDT by ridesthemiles
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To: ridesthemiles
PS LOVE my truck. Will give up something else to drive my truck. PPS It's paid for

I have a Ford truck and a Prius and the truck is paid for. The Prius we bought used and the price was comparable to other vehicles we were looking at. So far its worked pretty well.

68 posted on 03/14/2007 4:32:40 PM PDT by bkepley
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To: tcrlaf


Luckily, the Environmental Offset to buying a Prius is buying a Hummer.

.


69 posted on 03/14/2007 4:33:33 PM PDT by OESY
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To: KarlInOhio

Original cost= over $30,000 plus sales taxes.

Registration costs vary by state.

Insurance costs. Made mostly of plastic= expensive to repair.

Replacement of batteries, which I am pretty sure don't last 5 years or 100,000.

normal other costs- tires, tolls, car washes, annual detailing, tuneups, gas, etc.


70 posted on 03/14/2007 4:35:46 PM PDT by ridesthemiles
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To: Centurion2000

What kind of idiot numbers are they generating ? Lifetime costs of 585,000 dollars for a Hummer and 325,000 dollars for a Prius? "

Even if they slipped a decimal, the Hummer is cheaper. It would take 3 of the Prius @ even 32,500 x 3= $97,500 vs $58,500 for the Hummer.
I would be far safer in the Hummer, also.
Is there a problem with disposal of the Prius because of the batteries? Need more info on that.


71 posted on 03/14/2007 4:41:52 PM PDT by ridesthemiles
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To: tcrlaf
My Chevy Colorado consistently gets an average of 22mpg. I do more highway driving than city. But, I get the same average every time I do the numbers (I'm a scientist, and those numbers are spot on...not the EPA, that is all over the charts). It's an in-line Isuzu 5 cylinder that is 300 Hp. I'm a very happy camper with this pick up truck. It sits like a big truck, it drives like a car, and it hauls like a BIG truck. 4WD and a 5 speed auto transmission. I've had it for almost 2 years and I love it. I used to go for little foreign sports cars, till I needed a vehicle that could work like a field hand, and my old "silver" can do that.

This idea that we need these cars is BS, what we need is access to oil fields that produce, right here. Refineries that produce the amount of gasoline that is needed, and more. We need a federal government that stays out of a free market on energy. We need less moonbats and more engineers, but the University system seems to want to produce more moonbats and less engineers. If we change that problem we have it made, but not for at least 20 years. Until then we will have to wipe the Prius goo off the back tires of our "pickumuptrucks".

72 posted on 03/14/2007 4:47:04 PM PDT by timydnuc (I'll die on my feet before I'll live on my knees.)
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To: PAR35

Sounds like the battery is good for a little over 2 years. My current car is closing in on 18 years. That's the equivalent of 9 battery pack warranties."

I own a 1976 Chevy truck and a 1979 Buick station wagon.

Cost of parts, insurance, registration sure is lower than the "new" trick stuff. They can keep it. I like my vehicles.


73 posted on 03/14/2007 4:51:08 PM PDT by ridesthemiles
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To: flynmudd

It still uses "20 mpg city/30 mpg highway" even after its eaten a few Prius ? That Hemi must have a very helthy appetite.


74 posted on 03/14/2007 5:00:45 PM PDT by Kellis91789
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To: tcrlaf
All these people are taking the wrong approach, if they want clean running vehicles.

Solar powered, external combustion steam power is the ticket.

Put a black, triple expansion flash boiler in the bed of an F-350, and attach a battery powered gimbals mounted, self-aiming magnifying glass to almost focus the sun on the boiler, since we don't want to burn a hole in it.

A 1,000 gallon water tender trailer would complete the ensemble.

In an emergency, to could even double as a fire apparatus.

Now, if there were just some way to drive it at night....

75 posted on 03/14/2007 5:11:27 PM PDT by ApplegateRanch (Islam: a Satanically Transmitted Disease, spread by unprotected intimate contact with the Koranus.)
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To: ridesthemiles
1979 Buick

The Buick hasn't blown a gasket or seals yet?

76 posted on 03/14/2007 5:14:47 PM PDT by PAR35
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To: tcrlaf

I LOVE MY PRIUS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


77 posted on 03/14/2007 5:16:16 PM PDT by Schichtel (Scorch)
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To: bkepley
LOL..I'll have to calculate how many years my warranty is worth at that rate of driving..lessee..about 30 years.

I've got 200,000 miles on it.

Of course, the big trick to keeping your car in good shape is to not wash it. The dirt and pollen protects the paint. And you can save a lot of gas. For some reason, the other folks always volunteer to drive to lunch.

78 posted on 03/14/2007 5:19:57 PM PDT by PAR35
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To: ApplegateRanch
Now, if there were just some way to drive it at night....

Just put enough asbestos on the boiler to keep it hot all night.

79 posted on 03/14/2007 5:21:46 PM PDT by PAR35
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To: greenthumbedislndr
cadilladic converter? It's called a catalytic converter for cryin out loud!

Wot the Heck do you foreners know, anyhow? I is so angry I cut myownself shaving and had to get a septic stick to stop the bleed you caused me.

Jus FYI, it's called a Cadilladic Converter, and ifn y'all don't believe me, look under a frickin Cadillac, OK? And have your Green Card ready.

80 posted on 03/14/2007 5:21:56 PM PDT by Kenny Bunk (Hillary: A sociopath's enabler in the White House?)
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To: Flashman_at_the_charge
None other than Mort Sahl (Remember him?) has renamed the car the:

Center>The PIUS.

Completely in keeping with the new Green Religion!

81 posted on 03/14/2007 5:27:28 PM PDT by Kenny Bunk (Hillary: A sociopath's enabler in the White House?)
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To: Flashman_at_the_charge
None other than Mort Sahl (Remember him?) has renamed the car the:

Center>The PIUS.

Completely in keeping with the new Green Religion!

82 posted on 03/14/2007 5:27:30 PM PDT by Kenny Bunk (Hillary: A sociopath's enabler in the White House?)
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To: Flashman_at_the_charge
None other than Mort Sahl (Remember him?) has renamed the car the:

The PIUS.

Completely in keeping with the new Green Religion!

83 posted on 03/14/2007 5:27:40 PM PDT by Kenny Bunk (Hillary: A sociopath's enabler in the White House?)
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To: bray
They have no cadilladic converters so they belch smoke.

I don' need to convert no steenkin' Cadillacs.

84 posted on 03/14/2007 5:29:13 PM PDT by ApplegateRanch (Islam: a Satanically Transmitted Disease, spread by unprotected intimate contact with the Koranus.)
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To: tcrlaf

Paging Mr. Begley. Paging Mr. Ed Begley Jr.


85 posted on 03/14/2007 5:38:33 PM PDT by Sergio (If a tree fell on a mime in the forest, would he make a sound?)
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To: cf_river_rat
Have you driven the Hummer?

Never. Don't have anything against them per say, but IMHO, a vehicle that big that you can't fit a refrigerator , sofa and tables and chairs or run down to pick up a 1/2 ton of gravel or a yard of mulch in is a bunch of wasted real estate. If your objective is to haul a bunch of kids to soccer games, minivans do it very well for 1/3 of the cost.

BTW. That's just me, but I have never had my ego (or anything else) stroked by the type of vehicle I own. I always looked at them just as tools, and if I didn't need one, I wouldn't have one.

I understand other people feel different about cars, and it is a free country, but outside of the rare few who must drive very tough off-road situations or military applications, a hummer is an ego choice, IMHO.

Nothing wrong with that, but its not any different than the people who pay all that cash for the illusion of being "Earth friendly. Egos, just on different trips.

86 posted on 03/14/2007 6:38:08 PM PDT by Ditto (Global Warming: The 21st Century's Snake Oil)
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To: tcrlaf

I loved the way the liberal press (e.g., The Los Angeles Times) did
NOT do an analysis on the liberal's darling uber-conveyance,
the General Motors EV-1.

I suspect the environmental damage done when one EV-1 burned to
the axles was greater than the emissions by 10 Ford F-250s over their
useful lifetimes.


87 posted on 03/14/2007 6:40:49 PM PDT by VOA
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To: ApplegateRanch
Now, if there were just some way to drive it at night....

That's simple. Just add another trailer with an aux boiler running on lawn clipping.

The Stanley Steamer was just ahead of its time.


88 posted on 03/14/2007 6:49:26 PM PDT by Ditto (Global Warming: The 21st Century's Snake Oil)
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To: Kellis91789

Smooth 8 and a sipper not a chugger. I have a short commute to work 4.4 miles. Long trips I really get the great mileage even when I average 75 mph on cruise control.


89 posted on 03/14/2007 7:09:04 PM PDT by flynmudd (Proud Navy Mom to OSSA Blalock (Hope to See You March 17th in DC!)
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To: flynmudd
My 2005 Vette got 25 MPG traveling from Pittsburgh to London, Ontario in sub 20 degree temps at 75-85 mph with occasional bursts up to 100. I too suffer from an chronic need for torque and an occasional need for speed.
90 posted on 03/14/2007 7:09:06 PM PDT by free from tyranny
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To: GoldCountryRedneck

Hmmmm...Laurie David must be saddened. She brags about flipping off people who drive Hummers while driving her Prius. I guess we can flip her off now.


91 posted on 03/14/2007 7:11:32 PM PDT by boop (Now Greg, you know I don't like that WORD!)
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To: free from tyranny

The rush!


92 posted on 03/14/2007 7:18:44 PM PDT by flynmudd (Proud Navy Mom to OSSA Blalock (Hope to See You March 17th in DC!)
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To: USFRIENDINVICTORIA
While it's true that the Prius is usually over-hyped; and the Hummer is usually unjustly demonized -- the costs estimates in the article are simply ludicrous. They are based on the type of "accounting" we would normally associate with moonbats. This article is counter productive.

Wow.
Glad to see there's one person here with a brain.

Through a study by CNW Marketing called “Dust to Dust,”
What is this firm?
Who are their clients?

The numbers and facts in this article are so "out there" that it's actually funny.
What's not so funny is the way people are falling all over themselves to swallow the hype line, hook and sinker.

Is it any wonder Al Bore has such a huge fan club?
Looks like all the people who checked their brains in at the door are not of the liberal persuasion.

93 posted on 03/14/2007 9:40:58 PM PDT by Publius6961 (MSM: Israelis are killed by rockets; Lebanese are killed by Israelis.)
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To: cogitator
Even though one can calculate the energy required to produce the nickel in a hybrid battery, it really isn't responsible for all of the enviromental damage around the smelters and refinery, is it? Nickel is used for more than the batteries in hybrid cars.

They're not called rednecks for nothing. Brainpower is not their strong suit.

How long has that nickel mine and smelter been there in Sudbury Ontario? I suspect for generations before the Prius existed.

By the way, how much does a Hummer go for these days?
I bet not one of the clowns whooping it up today can come close to knowing the total volume of the "toxic" Prius batteries. No much more than the battery in a large pickup or SUV.

Where do all the dead lead-acid batteries go?
If they can be recycled, why can't the nmh ones?

94 posted on 03/14/2007 9:51:37 PM PDT by Publius6961 (MSM: Israelis are killed by rockets; Lebanese are killed by Israelis.)
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To: SFC Chromey
Hey, Al Gore is looking for good men with great imagination, zero knowledge and disdain for facts.

You're a shoe-in.

95 posted on 03/14/2007 9:53:35 PM PDT by Publius6961 (MSM: Israelis are killed by rockets; Lebanese are killed by Israelis.)
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To: tcrlaf

it is a good laugh!

the arrogant attitude of many prius owners deserves rebuttal.


96 posted on 03/14/2007 9:54:04 PM PDT by ken21 (it takes a village to brainwash your child + to steal your property! /s)
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To: bray
...VW busses put out more pollution than your SUV. They have no cadilladic converters so they belch smoke.

Actually, it has nothing to do with catalytic converters. The classic VW engine is air-cooled, and because of that it is carbureted to run rich, so that not all of the gasoline is burned. This assists in the cooling of the engine in much the same way as perspiration cools your skin, but results in a very dirty exhaust. The amount of unburned gas would overwhelm a catalytic converter in no time. The rich mixture is required if you want your VW engine to last very long at all.

97 posted on 03/14/2007 10:11:21 PM PDT by webheart
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To: webheart

The point is all those hippies who thought they were saving the planet were actually polluting it more than the SUV's they were sneering at. But they cared so it didn't matter.

Pray for W and Our Troops


98 posted on 03/15/2007 5:18:02 AM PDT by bray (Redeploy to Tehran)
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To: tcrlaf
Great article! It dings Pious and as an added benefit Canada. The snobs there call us evil but they are the biggest source of acid rain in Norde Americanos.
99 posted on 03/15/2007 5:30:00 AM PDT by mad_as_he$$ (Southeast Asian War Games, Second place.)
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To: tcrlaf

Can we finally build the breeder reactors?


100 posted on 03/15/2007 5:50:31 AM PDT by Aquinasfan (When you find "Sola Scriptura" in the Bible, let me know)
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