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bigmac
03-20-2007, 03:52 PM
Interesting article...

http://clubs.ccsu.edu/recorder/editorial/editorial_item.asp?NewsID=188


March 7, 2007

Prius Outdoes Hummer in Environmental Damage
By Chris Demorro
Staff Writer

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.

TMCNo1
03-20-2007, 04:02 PM
Very, very interesting! Doesn't surprise me in the least.

Archimedes
03-20-2007, 04:06 PM
While I'd love to believe it, it's simply not true. I saw this article posted on another board a week or so ago and then saw knowledgeable people debunk the whole thing, particularly the part about the plant in Ontario, which was cleaned up long before the Prius was even a gleam in some Toyota engineer's eye.

While I can't stand those little Pious cars, this is a biased hatchet job that stretches the facts and omits some pretty important information.

3event
03-20-2007, 04:18 PM
well...

1) I'd like to see the evidence from the debunkers as well as sources cited from the original papers

2) I wouldn't quote Greenpeace to make a case, but thats my opinion

3) Item not metioned is disposal of used hybrid batteries - if the US is overtaken by hybrids in 10 years, we will have quite a job disposing of all those batteries safely.

3) No question hybrids are overhyped, and I agree that even discounting all the above, you are likely to be money ahead buying a fuel-efficient gas engine vehicle like a Scion, Corolla, Civic, Aveo etc etc.

:twocents:

Upper Michigan Prostar190
03-20-2007, 05:39 PM
I think I will stay over at the "moving avatars" thread......:cool:

shepherd
03-20-2007, 05:46 PM
I agree with the last two posts. While interesting, the article doesn't come across as very balanced and objective, nor does it provide much in terms of corroborating evidence.

I'm not a big fan of hybrids either. For now, I'll stick with my fossil-fuel-burning, 8 cylinder, 5,000 lb. truck.

Ric
03-20-2007, 05:57 PM
maybe our writer is a chivvy man... anyone else get that impression?

bigmac
03-20-2007, 09:06 PM
I agree with the last two posts. While interesting, the article doesn't come across as very balanced and objective, nor does it provide much in terms of corroborating evidence.


I don't disagree. OTOH, I'm certain that "fair and balanced" opinions on the subject, from either side, are very hard to come by.

Hoosier Bob
03-20-2007, 09:16 PM
I have always loved the idea that an Electric Automobile is the most clean to operate. That is until you realize where the majority of electricity comes from! Not rivers! What is the problem with gas burning vehicles anyway? I can't smoke anywhere so it should offset, right?:o

I am with Bigmac on this one, Screw The Prius! Unamerican, No Glut, No Waste Machine that it is!I don't disagree. OTOH, I'm certain that "fair and balanced" opinions on the subject, from either side, are very hard to come by.

Upper Michigan Prostar190
03-20-2007, 09:45 PM
I agree with the last two posts. While interesting, the article doesn't come across as very balanced and objective, nor does it provide much in terms of corroborating evidence.

I'm not a big fan of hybrids either. For now, I'll stick with my fossil-fuel-burning, 8 cylinder, 5,000 lb. truck.
WOW!, you mean you really agree with my post?:eek3: You do realize what agreeing with the UMP means Shep.... It means your getting as strange as Harold. ;)

captain planet
03-20-2007, 10:15 PM
What a bunch of crap. You can tell he is padding his stats with his last statement that it takes 5 years to offset the cost of a hybrid......uh yea, at $1.75 per gallon. What happens when gas gets to $3 per gallon? Seems it would take almost half as long. Oh yea, and a Hybrid lifespan is more than 100K miles. Even the batteries are warrantied till 100K miles.

I'll bet he has a "BAD-BOWTIE" sticker on his 9 mpg hummer of his.

Upper Michigan Prostar190
03-20-2007, 10:33 PM
Uh-oh..... time to head back to the "moving avatar" thread again....

bigmac
03-20-2007, 10:34 PM
I don't understand them, but I think the politics of environmentalism are fascinating - really hard to sort out the wheat from the chaff. I do agree, however, there's plenty of crap to go around.

Upper Michigan Prostar190
03-20-2007, 10:37 PM
I don't understand them, but I think the politics of environmentalism are fascinating - really hard to sort out the wheat from the chaff. I do agree, however, there's plenty of crap to go around.
the wheat from the chaff? are you sure your not a farmer instead of a surgeon? :cool: ;)

tbd01
03-20-2007, 11:03 PM
I have a mastercraft sticker on my hummer:D

Leroy
03-20-2007, 11:09 PM
I agree, people seem to want to be able to point their finger somewhere else.

I don't understand them, but I think the politics of environmentalism are fascinating - really hard to sort out the wheat from the chaff. I do agree, however, there's plenty of crap to go around.

Hoosier Bob
03-20-2007, 11:13 PM
Sorry folks but the park's closed! Don't want to BBQ with your Veggie lovin' arse and I don't light my BBQ with electric if you know what I mean! Bring beer and we will talk!;)

Upper Michigan Prostar190
03-20-2007, 11:15 PM
Sensei Hoosier! What is thy bidding, my master?

Leroy
03-20-2007, 11:16 PM
Who is more green and why?

UMP

Or

Hoosier Bob

TX.X-30 fan
03-20-2007, 11:16 PM
Global warming is science by consensus. We will not run the planet on corn. Humans with all of our faults have little effect on our environment. As much as we would like to think we are in control, in the end its not our decision what happens to this or any other planet IMHO.

Hoosier Bob
03-20-2007, 11:17 PM
I am bidding? Grasshopper you are lost! Taketh of the Hoosier cup and you will be found!8p Sensei Hoosier! What is thy bidding, my master?

Upper Michigan Prostar190
03-20-2007, 11:18 PM
Who is more green and why?

UMP

Or

Hoosier Bob
OOO!! good question! :popcorn: :popcorn:

bigmac
03-20-2007, 11:20 PM
the wheat from the chaff? are you sure your not a farmer instead of a surgeon? :cool: ;)How do you think we get the wheat out of the chaff?

Hoosier Bob
03-20-2007, 11:20 PM
I get it "Jackhopper" you are a thread destroyer!8p

Upper Michigan Prostar190
03-20-2007, 11:21 PM
I am bidding? Grasshopper you are lost! Taketh of the Hoosier cup and you will be found!8p
May I drinketh from the Chalice of Wisdom?

Hoosier Bob
03-20-2007, 11:22 PM
How do I blow up your avatar?:D Global warming is science by consensus. We will not run the planet on corn. Humans with all of our faults have little effect on our environment. As much as we would like to think we are in control, in the end its not our decision what happens to this or any other planet IMHO.

Leroy
03-20-2007, 11:22 PM
Must be a vote for UMP! :D

Global warming is science by consensus. We will not run the planet on corn. Humans with all of our faults have little effect on our environment. As much as we would like to think we are in control, in the end its not our decision what happens to this or any other planet IMHO.

Upper Michigan Prostar190
03-20-2007, 11:22 PM
How do you think we get the wheat out of the chaff?
Carbination?:confused:

Hoosier Bob
03-20-2007, 11:23 PM
Wisdom? Oh sure, you'll feel real smart! That Chalice has cost me some dough as I must warn you!

Hoosier Bob
03-20-2007, 11:24 PM
My ride runs clean! What are you saying Leroy?:o Must be a vote for UMP! :D

tones03
03-20-2007, 11:25 PM
One giant marketing ploy and a way to save some fuel before they figure out another and good solution that isnt so full of BS.

I would take the hummer tho, and I know I have seen some Hummers with Duramax, and there is a guy in Illinois I think that for about 2grand and the cost of a Duramax will convert your Burban to hold the Duramax.

I can bring some beer while we sit around a fire and talk about gas sucking V8's pulling our gas sucking V8 boats.

Upper Michigan Prostar190
03-20-2007, 11:26 PM
Must be a vote for UMP! :D
Are you saying I run on corn?:confused:

Hoosier Bob
03-20-2007, 11:28 PM
I thought the "Tornado" was to end all of this BS! I have a Flowbee and a Tornado! My F150 gets 40 MPG and my hair looks great!:D One giant marketing ploy and a way to save some fuel before they figure out another and good solution that isnt so full of BS.

I would take the hummer tho, and I know I have seen some Hummers with Duramax, and there is a guy in Illinois I think that for about 2grand and the cost of a Duramax will convert your Burban to hold the Duramax.

I can bring some beer while we sit around a fire and talk about gas sucking V8's pulling our gas sucking V8 boats.

Leroy
03-20-2007, 11:32 PM
Read TX.X-30fan carefully.

My ride runs clean! What are you saying Leroy?:o

Upper Michigan Prostar190
03-20-2007, 11:32 PM
I thought the "Tornado" was to end all of this BS! I have a Flowbee and a Tornado! My F150 gets 40 MPG and my hair looks great!:D
Tornado, the 8-6-4 concept right? :rolleyes: about as effective as the flowbee, now that explains your "less than perfect" haircut:o

Hoosier Bob
03-20-2007, 11:35 PM
Runs on 8 when needed then 6 and finally 4! Cadillac! Gotta love'em!

Leroy
03-20-2007, 11:36 PM
I thought you ran on the ultimate clean fuel cornish pasties!

Are you saying I run on corn?:confused:

Upper Michigan Prostar190
03-20-2007, 11:38 PM
I thought you ran on the ultimate clean fuel cornish pasties!
You, are correct sir.....YES!

http://www.adequatulence.com/hartman/vault/pictures/mcmahon.jpg

shepherd
03-21-2007, 12:16 AM
WOW!, you mean you really agree with my post?:eek3: You do realize what agreeing with the UMP means Shep.... It means your getting as strange as Harold. ;)

Ohhhhhhhhhh....................................... crap. :( :cool:

Upper Michigan Prostar190
03-21-2007, 09:34 AM
Ohhhhhhhhhh....................................... crap. :( :cool:
Oh dont worry Shep. Its not a bad thing being like Harold. You get to smell lots of teak oil, and that keeps him happy....whatever works man, roll with it. :cool:

cmack
03-21-2007, 10:07 AM
Just my :twocents:
I have a really long commute 120 rt for 3-4 days a week. In 04 I looked into everything green. Looked in to hybrids and was not impressed because they only get "great" mileage driving below 30mph.
Here in TX you are doing at least 70mph in the slow lane.
I decided on a 2003 VW Jetta TDI (named lil' stinker). Posted mileage on it is 46mpg. It is not a hybrid just a 90hp turbo diesel motor.
The last two tanks I saw "real" 50mpg. 550miles a tank and 11 gallons to fill her back up. The car now has 92k on it and I have been very pleased. You might think the 90 hp is pretty weak but it has all the "get up and go" that I need. Not to mention it only costed 15k.

Workin' 4 Toys
03-21-2007, 10:11 AM
One giant marketing ploy and a way to save some fuel before they figure out another and good solution that isnt so full of BS.

I would take the hummer tho, and I know I have seen some Hummers with Duramax, and there is a guy in Illinois I think that for about 2grand and the cost of a Duramax will convert your Burban to hold the Duramax.
And for another $2k, it'll run on used grease....;) Instead of putting in the landfill....Sounds enviromentally friendly to me...

Maybe even more useful than hydrogen power.....

causewayskiier
03-21-2007, 10:13 AM
That sounds like a gas guzzler trying to relieve his guilt. Also the part about the average hummer going 300,000 miles. The hummer has a chevy truck engine, there might be an occasional chevy truck engine make 300K but it certainly not the norm.

Workin' 4 Toys
03-21-2007, 10:14 AM
maybe our writer is a chivvy man... anyone else get that impression?
I thought about that until...
[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.


By the way, Bigmac, I too find this stuff very "interesting". Keep 'em coming....;)

Workin' 4 Toys
03-21-2007, 10:20 AM
That sounds like a gas guzzler trying to relieve his guilt. Also the part about the average hummer going 300,000 miles. The hummer has a chevy truck engine, there might be an occasional chevy truck engine make 300K but it certainly not the norm.
I can't argue your point, I do wish they still used the 5.7 though....The "norm"...;)

Upper Michigan Prostar190
03-21-2007, 10:26 AM
I can't argue your point, I do wish they still used the 5.7 though....The "norm"...;)
I dont know......looks like a photochop job to me. Thats a funny looking 3. ;) 8p

Workin' 4 Toys
03-21-2007, 11:19 AM
I dont know......looks like a photochop job to me. Thats a funny looking 3. ;) 8p
I guarantee you it is not. The only editing that was done, I compressed the pic for posting here. That pic was taken about a month or so ago, with my camera using my finger to push the button.

Archimedes
03-21-2007, 11:51 AM
well...

1) I'd like to see the evidence from the debunkers as well as sources cited from the original papers


You could start here for the high points:

http://www.autobloggreen.com/2007/03/08/hummer-vs-prius-redux-this-time-to-hummer-i-dont-think-so/

Note, I'm in no way a greenie and would much sooner own a Hummer than a Pious. But I know a don't-confuse-me-with-the-facts-while-I-mislead-you-with-misleading-statistics-and-unsupported-innuendo hatchet job when I see one (from either side of the greenie aisle).

Also, it appear the guy who wrote the original article is a college kid.

3event
03-21-2007, 12:46 PM
I still think both sides are scant on the facts. We can see they disagree on the the condition of the nickel mine. If either side were offering facts, figures, and sources on the actual logistics/manufacturing costs, we'd have an actual debate - not just an internet "conversation".

In any case, the article isn't likely to change any minds by itself. If it provokes more THOUGHT on the issue, fine. I wouldn't waste too much time reading the fact-devoid rantings of either author or authors defending their stance at this point.

That time is much better spent enriching my life on TMC:D

Workin' 4 Toys
03-21-2007, 12:59 PM
Also, it appear the guy who wrote the original article is a college kid.
Is that a bad thing?

captain planet
03-21-2007, 07:20 PM
I know that I have gotten things all stirred up on here with my post but that was not my intention. It just really makes me mad when someone distorts the facts like that article. :mad: But remember there is one fact that cannot be refuted. There is a finite amount of oil on this planet, why are we in such a big hurry to burn it all up so fast? Is there not a good reason to save some of it for our children or grandchildren?:confused:

bigmac
03-21-2007, 07:27 PM
I know that I have gotten things all stirred up on here with my post but that was not my intention. It just really makes me mad when someone distorts the facts like that article. :mad:

I understand your anger at distorted facts, but surely you're aware that other people get just as mad at the just-as-egregious distortions in similar articles from the other camp. As I mentioned, neither side of the environment issue has been telling us the whole truth and there are PLENTY of lies/distortions/half-truths and ignorance to go around from both sides.

captain planet
03-21-2007, 07:34 PM
Absolutely. It's all about money....period.

I keep up on these types of things so I know b-s when I see/read it. One thing that can't be argued is the 45-50 mpg my buddy gets from his Prius. At $3 per gallon, it will be my next car in a few years unless something better comes along in the meantime.

Hoosier Bob
03-21-2007, 09:15 PM
VW Jetta TDI 50+ MPG! I loved mine and would do it again with out the BS. Diesel Baby! It burns not so clean but mileage is awesome. Maybe if we developed this fuel for awhile? Next ride is Diesel no doubt.;)

jimmer2880
03-22-2007, 06:28 AM
VW Jetta TDI 50+ MPG! I loved mine and would do it again with out the BS. Diesel Baby! It burns not so clean but mileage is awesome. Maybe if we developed this fuel for awhile? Next ride is Diesel no doubt.;)

Same here. I really wish VW would come out with a mini-pickup diesel (2wd). I really can't have a car as a daily driver. Nobody puts a diesel in a mini-pickup, so I'll probably end up with a Jetta Diesel.

Ric
03-22-2007, 09:21 AM
Absolutely. It's all about money....period.

I keep up on these types of things so I know b-s when I see/read it. One thing that can't be argued is the 45-50 mpg my buddy gets from his Prius. At $3 per gallon, it will be my next car in a few years unless something better comes along in the meantime.

we can argue about it all day long but it really IS all about money and that is not a bad thing.

Economics will drive every aspect of this issue. Try to trump that and you will have communism.

Upper Michigan Prostar190
03-22-2007, 10:33 AM
:popcorn: :popcorn: :popcorn: :popcorn:

BrianM
03-22-2007, 10:46 AM
Same here. I really wish VW would come out with a mini-pickup diesel (2wd). I really can't have a car as a daily driver. Nobody puts a diesel in a mini-pickup, so I'll probably end up with a Jetta Diesel.

They made one in the late 70s and early 80s. A friend of mine had two of them. Those little diesels were gutless wonders. Put the Jetta TDI motor in one and then you would have something

BrianM
03-22-2007, 10:49 AM
I am waiting for Subaru to bring their new boxer diesel to the states. Just released in Europe for '08 in the Legacy and there are rumors that it will be stateside by 2010. I will be ready to trade the '05 Outback in by then and would love a diesel version. We had looked seriously at a TDI Jetta Wagon when we bought the Subaru but just couldn't bite the bullet with VWs electrical gremlins. The TDI motor is great though.