Rick Voshall
Now there\'s a surprise. We can regulate by adding MORE taxes onto the cost of fuel. NO, NO, NO. no new taxes!!!!! People have got to STOP buying into the approach of controlling something by taxing it.
Robert in Vancouver
There\'s more than enough taxes already - on everything. Too much of it just gets wasted because it\'s \"easy come easy go\" money. No new taxes on anything. Period.
How about setting a reduction target for new trucks to meet such as reducing fuel consumption by 2% per year for the next 15 years using 2010 fuel consumption as a baseline.
Just make that the law so any truck maker who wants sell trucks has to meet it or he can\'t sell trucks. If a truck maker reduces fuel consumption by 10% in year one he will be way ahead of the pack and will be eager to reduce even more in year two to keep ahead of competitors.
Truck buyers will buy the new trucks over time to remain competitive. Truck makers with the lowest fuel consumption will sell the most trucks.
Mark in MI
YES! YES! YES! We need taxes to encourage people to change their behavior. Fuel economy on large trucks has been discussed and researched for a long time, but never implemented because there was no incentive. It NEEDS to be regulated and instead of adding a government department, we can just hike the price of fuel, something that should have been done long ago. Only THEN will these types of improvements finally be made to trucks. The general tax fund pays for environmental clean up now. The causes of pollution and inefficiency should be directly charged for the pollution they cause to 1) reduce the pollution, and 2) to pay for cleaning up the mess they already made. Same with coal and oil. We will have to spend TRILLIONS in the future because we failed to act yesterday. A fuel, oil, and coal tax is the easiest way and will NOT kill jobs if it is implemeted slowly and progressively, which should have been done over the last 30 years. Fighting it now just puts us further behind. Encouraging efficiency and new technology will actually create new jobs and make America more competitive. Don\'t listen to the lies of the coal and oil industry lobby! Europe has high fuel taxes and many European countries are better off than we are.
And yet again they miss the target. While they might be able to fractionally improve fuel consumption by tweaking the engine they could and would do far more if they did something about the aerodynamics of the vehicle. They are driving big 18 wheel bircks around which is not exactly the best shape to slip through the air. Don\'t think it matters much then consider than on a small fuel effiecient car a rear view mirror (the one on the outside) can account for 25% of the total drag. Then look at one of these with boxy shapes and things stuck on all over and you can see there is a lot of improvment to be had. The turck and trailers both need work before this would do anything.
Facebook User
In 1979 a group of Minnesota college students built a car that was able to get 79 MPG and cruise at 60 MPH, all with off the shelf components, no electronics. The article was in The Mother Earth News magazine and is in their online archive.
@Robo, your proposal penalises the most efficient truck makers. @Wragie, prescribing a solution should be a last resort. It removes the incentive to develop alternative technologies. If you need to force people to do something it shows a systemic failure. Incentivisation is far better. Fuel tax can be revenue neutral (swap it for some other tax) if that\'s desirable or necessary for economic reasons. User/polluter pays in true capitalist style.
Bruce Williams
There is huge incentive for better fuel economy without the need for raising taxes. Lower operating costs alone for owner/drivers as well as fleets can and will drive the market for innovation. Less operating cost will mean less shipping costs as well, further stimulating the economy. On a smaller, yet equally important, scale is the need for more efficient RV\'s. Just look at the number of large diesel pusher motor coaches around. For us, 20% better fuel economy is enough to make the trip from Florida to our farms in Ohio on less than one tank instead of stopping for fuel. Not only a matter of convenience but, over the life of the coach, considerable savings as well. Innovative strides towards fuel efficient recreational vehicles will also provide stimulus to the ailing RV industry and help create thousands of jobs. This is merely the tip of the iceberg in terms of goods, services and many other \"diesel driven\" technologies that support our economy. (not to mention agriculture)
Nick Gencarelle
Using Eaton\'s hybrid assist would go a long way to improving the mileage-along the lines of over 40 percent for large vehicles that stop and go a lot-hydraulic accumulators! Add solar to the rooftops for an additional battery for the extras the drivers need when parked. Add regenerative shocks from Electric Truck to capture all that wasted kinetic energy in the bouncing we get from every road. Another 7-9 percent savings. All in all it would not take ten years to recover these investments more like 4 years. Lighten the steel-use more basalt and carbon fiber. I wish these trucking companies would get it. Better aerodynamics for sure. Why does it take them until 2020 to get to this? The bureaucracy gets in it\'s own way time and time again-I wish they would realize we the planet do not have that much time to dawdle-get freeking on with it-that\'s ten years away and the technology is here NOW-DUH
I agree wholeheartedly - no new taxes. While it MIGHT provide some incentive for investing in better fuel economy it is also likely that the increased expense just be passed on and we the consumers will really be the ones footing the bill. No thank you.
The article does mention an 11% savings due to aerodynamics but that seems based on refining current designs rather than a ground up redesign. Heck, this article claims 7.5% reduction in fuel consumption by just adding a boat tail. I am sure this could be modified to fold up and swing relatively flat against the side of the trailer when not in use. http://www.gizmag.com/truck-boat-tail/13283/
The main issue is the trucking industry\'s resistance to change. I worked for a trucking company for a few years it is still a macho / good ol\' boy mentality industry. There are already a lot of bolt on products available. http://www.heavydutytrucking.com/2006/03/072a0603.asp
Ray Solar
What we really need is a real alternative to carbon fuels. Please check this out: