Budweiser trades Clydesdales for natural gas

The famous Clydesdales that have hauled Budweiser’s barrels of beer since the 19th century are finally being replaced by up-to-date 21st century, compressed natural gas-driven vehicles. Well, it isn’t quite that simple. There’s been a long, 80-year interval between the… Continue Reading →

Paul Revere: The Teslas are coming, the Teslas are coming!

When he died, the patriot Paul Revere was embalmed in V8 juice, tanning lotion and several energy drinks. Surprisingly, he reappeared at a relatively recent conference of the Massachusetts Association of Automobile Dealers, looking fit and ready for another ride.… Continue Reading →

Self-driving cars

It seems like a kind of Hollywood fantasy — autonomous little roadsters scooting in and out of traffic, breathlessly avoiding collisions and getting to their destination before anyone else. Then again, it seems like the inevitable. If computers can perform… Continue Reading →

The game of checkers and corn-based ethanol

Recent news concerning the use of corn waste or residual products to create commercially viable ethanol reminds me of a game of checkers. One jump forward, one jump backward, one move sideways. Depending how smart, bored or prone to crying… Continue Reading →

Ruminations on oil donations, foreign nations and replacement fuels

The “Old Gray Lady,” The New York Times, did it again….its recent article indicating the extent of government funds from foreign countries supporting so-called independent think tanks and universities in the U.S. was enlightening and was also clearly in the… Continue Reading →

Can Tesla pave the way for electric vehicles?

Well, it’s official. Tesla Motors will be setting up shop just outside Reno to build its Gigafactory, the $5 billion battery manufacturing facility that will be one of the most ambitious industrial projects of the era. In a joint statement… Continue Reading →

What the world needs now is land (and honesty) to get to replacement fuels

I had the good fortune to meet and work a bit with Dr. Edwin Land, the inventor of the Polaroid camera. We were both on an informal poverty task force created by President Kennedy. I always admired Land. Throughout his… Continue Reading →

The best and worst of times for ethanol

For ethanol it is the best and worst of times. Silos are bursting with a bumper crop and the price of corn has fallen by half, from $7 to $3.50 a bushel over the past year. Refiners are buying feedstock… Continue Reading →

Natural gas vehicles take the halfway route

In the early 1990s, California tried to force the introduction of electric cars by requiring that auto companies produce a zero-emissions vehicle in order to remain in the state. The result was Chevrolet’s EV1, which everyone agreed was the best… Continue Reading →

Paul Harvey, the rest of the news and natural gas

Paul Harvey was a conservative icon in radio news during the mid to end of the 20th century. While I often differed with the substance of his commentary, he was a welcome travel partner when driving, particularly on a long… Continue Reading →