With high hopes and expectations in hand and mind, I gamely headed over to the Alt-Car Expo in Santa Monica last weekend. Nothing against the event itself... it was a nice gathering. But it was completely bogus.
There were some cool things there. I test-drove the Nissan Leaf, which, while I still wouldn't buy it, was really fun. It had impressive features, it had great pick-up, and it was whisper-quiet. I got back in my car and nearly went deaf. So it felt, anyway! So yeah it was cool, but I still want my smartcar. Electric, preferably, but that probably won't be available here in the States for awhile. Boo.
TRUE alt is the smartcar (http://smartusa.com/index.aspx), the think ( http://thinkev.com/ ), the Aptera (http://aptera.com/). Where were they? I'm not fooled. You shouldn't be either. Demand more. I was at a talk by the creators of Fuel (http://thefuelfilm.com/), and they had arrived in their Prius that they had converted. It got 150mpg, and those gallons were algae bio-fuel, not petrol. Now THAT'S "alt" for sure.
Even the electric cars, which are seriously impressive, still run off the grid. They still suck coal power and nuclear. Unless you have a total solar set-up, you're still contributing. Sorry, but it's true. Unless you are riding a bike or walking, you're pretty much still contributing. Oh, by all means, you are doing better, but we're still not THERE. We can demand to be there. We really can.
And it's up to us, cuz ain't no one gonna do it for us.