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Thread: Clunkers' Effect on Pollution? A Blip

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    Clunkers' Effect on Pollution? A Blip

    From ABC News, an AP piece, written by Science Writer Seth Borenstein, August 4

    `Cash for Clunkers' Effect on Pollution? A Blip - ABC News

    1. The Clunker Conjecture amounts to ONE HOUR PER YEAR of global warming

    2. It saves 4.5 hours worth of gasoline, nation wide

    "Cash for clunkers" could have the same effect on global warming pollution as shutting down the entire country — every automobile, every factory, every power plant — for an hour per year. That could rise to three hours if the program is extended by Congress and remains as popular as it is now.

    Climate experts aren't impressed.

    Compared to overall carbon dioxide emissions in the United States, the pollution savings from cash for clunkers do not noticeably move the fuel gauge. Environmental experts say the program — conceived primarily to stimulate the economy and jump-start the auto industry — is not an effective way to attack climate change.

    "As a carbon dioxide policy, this is a terribly wasteful thing to do," said Henry Jacoby, a professor of management and co-director of the Joint Program on the Science and Policy of Global Change at MIT. "The amount of carbon you are saving per federal expenditure is very, very small."

    Officials expect a quarter-million gas guzzlers will be junked under the original $1 billion set aside by Congress — money that is now all but exhausted.

    Calculations by The Associated Press, using Department of Transportation figures, show that replacing those fuel hogs will reduce carbon dioxide emissions by just under 700,000 tons a year. While that may sound impressive, it's nothing compared to what the U.S. spewed last year: nearly 6.4 billion tons (and that was down from previous years).

    That means on average, every hour, America emits 728,000 tons of carbon dioxide. The total savings per year from cash for clunkers translates to about 57 minutes of America's output of the chief greenhouse gas.

    Likewise, America will be using nearly 72 million fewer gallons of gasoline a year because of the program, based on the first quarter-million vehicles replaced. U.S. drivers go through that amount of gas every 4 1/2 hours, according to the Department of Energy.
    3. The credibility of Clunkers is crashing cuz most of the cars purchased---for the express purpose of pumping up the US economy---are foreign brands

    4. It also demands the destruction of millions of dollars of assett, used cars that could help thousands of Americans get to work or shuttle about their families, it looks to skew screwy the pre-owned car market, it appears to be a drag on auto mechanics and parts suppliers, etc

    4. In the name of environmentalism it looks to scrap tons of landfill, it pours liquid glass into engines, rendering worthless the most recyclable parts of discarded cars, wreckers don't want em, for instance...

    5. As law, it's typically clumsy and ad hoc in its conception and execution, like Keystone Kops

    6. It's also pertinent that the preference of consumers, when it comes to the few American cars they ARE buying, is for Ford, which did NOT receive a bailout, over Govt Motors, as the latter is apparently perceived as less solvent in the long run


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    Last edited by The Prof; 08-05-09 at 08:26 PM.

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    Re: Clunkers' Effect on Pollution? A Blip

    Wait! You mean that we aren't going to stop global warming and wean ourselves from oil by replacing well under 1% of the nation's cars and spending under 1/100 of a percent of our GDP? Seriously? Why do we bother to collect taxes at all? Obviously, we should hire private companies to create sun-reflecting clouds of water vapor or pump sulfur into the atmosphere. And disband the EPA.
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    Re: Clunkers' Effect on Pollution? A Blip

    It's also worth noting that new cars don't spring out of thin air. They cost energy (read: pollution) to make.

    Professor Michael Gerrard said what is good for the economy could also have benefited the environment. But he noted the law fell well short of that goal.

    “It was sold as good for the auto industry, good for the environment and good for energy security,” Gerrard said. “It was sold as a three-fer. It’s more of a one-fer.”

    ...

    In turn, Gerrard noted that will result in small reductions in energy consumption and greenhouse gases if at all, especially when the energy costs of building the new cars are factored in.

    Any energy savings, Gerrard said, could take several years to realize after taking into account what he calls “carbon dioxide payback time,” the time it takes the fuel savings from a new car to exceed the energy cost used to make a new vehicle.
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    Re: Clunkers' Effect on Pollution? A Blip

    I'll be honest, I'm not really sold on this "buy American" when it comes to cars. I mena, if I buy American, I inevitably am supporting the UAW which I don't like. If I buy a foreign made car, say a BMW, which has a plant 1 hour south of me, or a Subaru which has a plant in Indiana, I am supporting non-union jobs in this country. The money at the top is going to somewhere overseas, but people that high up aren't really my concern. It seems I support American workers no matter what car I buy.

    But its a moot point, since I'll never buy a new car anyway. I always buy used.
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    Re: Clunkers' Effect on Pollution? A Blip

    What's an hour of global warming anyway?

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    Re: Clunkers' Effect on Pollution? A Blip

    72 Million gallons of gasoline less? More supply = lower prices. I'm down for that. It gives businesses business. It gives people with bad cars more money when you subtract the need to replace their crappy car, the gas prices, and the repair prices. It supports the American economy. It also helps the environment at the same time, what's not to like? Btw, one hour of AMERICA'S consumption of gasoline isn't the same thing as one hour of an American's consumption of gasoline. If the government gave a person a dollar, sure you could say that "it's only a dollar" but if the government gave EVERYONE a dollar? That's hundreds of millions of dollars.

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    Re: Clunkers' Effect on Pollution? A Blip

    Quote Originally Posted by Smoke[MaxX] View Post
    72 Million gallons of gasoline less? More supply = lower prices.
    That's a "blip" in the grand scheme of things.

    It gives businesses business.
    Only after necessarily taking away business from businesses.

    It gives people with bad cars more money when you subtract the need to replace their crappy car, the gas prices, and the repair prices.
    It gives them more debt.

    It supports the American economy.
    It stimulates the economy by necessarily destimulating it.

    It also helps the environment at the same time,
    This has a MINIMAL effect on the environment.

    what's not to like?
    Pretty much everything.

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    Re: Clunkers' Effect on Pollution? A Blip

    Quote Originally Posted by phattonez View Post
    That's a "blip" in the grand scheme of things.
    Sure, if 72 million gallons of gas is a blip to you, then $200 million more in stimulus money is not a big deal either since they're roughly equivalent.

    Only after necessarily taking away business from businesses.
    Oh? Obama caused America not to buy cars?

    It gives them more debt.
    In what way? You're assuming people in debt are buying these cars. I'm not.


    It stimulates the economy by necessarily destimulating it.
    Care to explain this?

    This has a MINIMAL effect on the environment.
    So you agree that it helps the environment then? Thanks. It was on my list of minor perks, but as long as it's fulfilled, then it still gets a check mark.

    Pretty much everything.
    Oh? Care to explain again?

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    Re: Clunkers' Effect on Pollution? A Blip

    Quote Originally Posted by Smoke[MaxX] View Post
    Sure, if 72 million gallons of gas is a blip to you, then $200 million more in stimulus money is not a big deal either since they're roughly equivalent.
    It's $200 million that could have been spent on a rail line or roads. There were better ways to spend that money.

    Oh? Obama caused America not to buy cars?
    Where is the money for this program coming from?

    In what way? You're assuming people in debt are buying these cars. I'm not.
    You must not know what debt is. People who are buying these cars must take out loans in order to pay for the rest of the car not covered by this program. A loan is debt.

    Care to explain this?
    Money that the government puts into the economy's left pocket must necessarily be taken out of the economy's right pocket.

    So you agree that it helps the environment then? Thanks. It was on my list of minor perks, but as long as it's fulfilled, then it still gets a check mark.
    I don't think that anyone would say that the improvement to the environment from this program is worth $200 million.

    Who shall ascend the hill of the Lord? And who shall stand in his holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to what is false, and does not swear deceitfully. Psalm 24
    "True law is right reason in agreement with nature . . . Whoever is disobedient is fleeing from himself and denying his human nature [and] will suffer the worst penalties . . ." - Cicero

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    Re: Clunkers' Effect on Pollution? A Blip

    The whole ball of wax is nothing short of obscene.

    They are using our money to subsidize car purchases then destroying perfectly
    good cars. And who thinks this is a good idea???? Duh!

    And for whoever was dissing the UAW the company selling the most cars is
    Ford, you know, the one that didnt use our tax money and get taken over
    by the messiah....all the rest are transplant car companies.

    These people rushing to the dealerships, drooling over a numbers game
    will have (when the dust settles) 36 to 60 months of car notes. Now
    thats a real winning situation. Too bad their jobs dont come with that
    much of a certainty.

    And, if you dont support American jobs there will be a point at which we
    will all arrive....the level playing field...level with third world countries in
    income and living standard. Think that wont affect you...dream on.
    Please dont lie, cheat or steal. The government doesnt
    like competition.

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