Posts Tagged ‘Tesla’

Now on pre-order, the battery systems sell for about $1,200, and can be daisy-chained to exceed Tesla Powerwall storage capability

April 11th, 2016

I am a huge fan of Tesla and the groundbreaking rules-changing ways the company goes about its business.  So when there’s a company that challenges it at first I get a little upset, and then when I’ve calmed down, I realize that if the product is a good thing, it will only raise the sustainability bar. In this case, there is a new home charging battery on the horizon which installs in your home in a few seconds; all you have to do is plug it in. Seems pretty simple!

» Read more: Now on pre-order, the battery systems sell for about $1,200, and can be daisy-chained to exceed Tesla Powerwall storage capability

Revisiting Plastic Bag Charges

March 27th, 2014

In May, 2010 I wrote a post about the then spate of waste management efforts that had been implemented by the City of Toronto. One of those programs was a 5¢ charge for single use plastic bags by retail organizations in the city. Anyone who has the unfortunate circumstance to live in Toronto under the current mayor, Rob Ford, will know that that city by-law was repealed by that forward thinking leader. In 2010 I had wondered if the ban on plastic bags was working, and after doing some research, contacting the city, reading grocery chains’ annual reports I discovered that indeed, a simple 5¢ charge had effectively reduced single plastic bag use by a whopping 70%. I would say that that is an effective policy! I guess Mayor Ford didn’t agree.

In another forward thinking move, the car dealers of New York state are trying to put pressure on the state government to revoke Tesla Motors’ sales license. Tesla sells direct to consumers and avoids a 6-9% mark-up fee included in car dealers’ prices. While it doesn’t make the cars affordable for most of us (in Ontario they start at $68,000), it does put them in the same league as other luxury cars. North Carolina, Texas and New Jersey are just three states who’ve succumbed to car dealer pressure and forbidden Tesla from selling direct to consumer. I don’t really know how forbidding the sale of  a clean running electric car protects consumers’ rights, but I’m sure someone can explain it to me.

The city of New York is now contemplating charging 10¢ for any single use bag, paper or plastic. In another giant step backwards for the environment, the American Progressive Bag Alliance has issued the following statement regarding this proposed by-law:

Denying that this legislation is a tax is disingenuous to the hardworking residents of New York City. This proposed ordinance will drive up the cost of already expensive groceries for New Yorkers while failing to achieve any environmental goals.

Given that there is evidence to the contrary (see aforementioned research done on Toronto’s past efforts), they may want to revisit that statement. They also might want to take a look at the website plasticoceans.net where they’ve estimated that over one million single plastic use bags are used every minute. Now that’s a good use of resources! (not.)

The single use plastic bag industry is one that should happily die a quick death, and it is only through policies such as charging for plastic bags that will help change our consumer habits. They are easy policies to implement while promoting a cleaner environment for future generations.

The Tesla is Here!

July 5th, 2010

For the long weekend we were up in Collingwood hiking the Bruce Trail, swimming and kyaking in icy cold Georgian Bay, and enjoying just not being in Toronto and fighting road construction and traffic. Is it just me, or is road construction particularly rampant this year?

While turning onto highway 26 I happened to notice a big canopy covering a snappy red sports car. Now I don’t really know or have a lot of interest in cars, but this was the Tesla. I have read a lot about the Tesla, but I have to admit, I’d never seen it. And trust me, it really is an eye-catching car.

Tesla Motors Sport Model

Tesla Motors Roadster Sport

Tesla Motors was created by a group of Silicon Valley engineers “who set out to prove that electric vehicles could be awesome.” The first electric car debuted in 2008.

One note: The website says their cars are “emissions free.” I hate to be picky, but that’s not entirely accurate. It depends on how the electricity to charge the cars is generated: whether it’s from coal-fired or natural gas plants, giant hydro, nuclear, solar or wind.

A little about the Tesla:

  • It’s a 100% electric car. There is no back-up fuel system.
  • It costs about $6 in Ontario to fully charge the car’s battery and takes about 6 hours. It uses 220 V system.
  • A fully charged battery can take the car 400 km before it needs to recharge.
  • The average commute is about 40 km/day so it takes about 10 days of driving before you need to recharge.
  • For long trips you need to plan your route accordingly by finding a trailer park or, as the two salespeople told me, asking a nice motel if you can borrow their dryer outlet for about 20minutes.
  • Partial recharging does not wear down the battery.
  • Battery warranty is for 3 years.

This car can be yours for the low, low price of $125,000!

Tesla is coming out with a sedan model in 2012 and the estimated price is $60,000.

Needless to say, as demand increases, prices should become a little more realistic.

For more information, visit Tesla’s website.

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