The op-ed in today's LA Times (We Need Voltswagens in the print edition; Bring back the electric car online) deserves attention from the public and state policy makers. Sherry Boschert, author of Plug-in Hybrids, is publicly posing the stark question as it needs to be asked: Will CARB push for cars capable of zero-emission driving for today's consumers using available, affordable, tested battery technology or will they support mere research programs even proponents say won't be marketable for a generation.
On the ground at the LA Auto Show, and on the air (Honda here and BMW here) automakers tout hydrogen & fuel cell vehicles disingenuously as "ready for the world when the world is ready." Behind the scenes they lobby to lower the numbers of these million dollar babies they must produce to meet their zero emission vehicle obligations. As Martin Zimmerman of the LA Times recently wrote in an otherwise gushing review of the Toyota FCHV recently, "Maybe, as some critics like to say, hydrogen is the fuel of the future and always will be."
It's past time the public, environmental organizations and policy makers got hip to the automaker con game and all got on the same page advocating plug-in cars. I look forward to CARB's response.