Gas 2 says that propane is the sleeping giant of alternative transportation fuels in North America. Propane costs 30 to 40% less than gasoline and burns cleaner. It is a byproduct of natural gas and petroleum, occurring naturally during domestic oil refining and natural gas processing. At 270 times more compact as a liquid than as a gas, it is highly economical to store and transport. Propane is also known as liquefied petroleum gas (LPG or LP gas) and when used as an transportation fuel it is called propane autogas. In the U.S. some 270,000 vehicles are using it from some 2,500 fueling stations. Now that gasoline prices in the US are heading towards $4 per gallon or higher, some think that propane will compete with natural gas and EVs for the American driver’s attention.  Impact News mentions that Williamson County, Texas has 31 government vehicles running on propane and 6 refueling stations.

plug-incars writes about the state of the electric car market in the UK. In a nutshell: “The government is subsidising the costs and there’s a greater range of EVs on sale than ever. But they’re just not selling.” The reasons are the high cost of the cars (despite the subsidy), the lack of charging points outside London, the long time it takes to recharge a battery, and the limited range of EVs. Added to that is the fact there is no tax advantage to owing an electric vehicle and the unknown depreciation rate for this cars.

Consumer angst over EVs is not unique to the UKZDNet Green Tech Pastures is finding similar concerns in the US. “Whether it is range anxiety or safety fears, 87 percent of U.S. adults have some sort of nagging concern about EV technology.”

SmartPlanet tells us that Japan and South Korea dominate the electric car battery and hybrid battery market.  A new report by Pike Research reveals that South Korea and Japan rank 1st and 2nd in the production of lithium ion batteries which are used in electric vehicles. The batteries are being made by companies that originally produced cells for the consumer electronics and computing markets. Pike expects the marketto increase 450% by 2017, to 28 million kilowatt hours as sales of electric and hybrid vehicles grows to millions of vehicles per year. Purely electric vehicles will account for 74% of the 28 million kWh, plug-in electric hybrids for 22%, and non-plug in electric hybrids for 4%.

The Vancouver Province gives its readers useful tips on joining the electric car revolution including knowing their cost of electricity.

CBC News reports that EV drivers face long recharging times in the Canadian province of Manitoba. Currently there are no public fast charging points in the provinces so EV drivers are forced to install them in their homes or take up to 10 hours to recharge their vehicles.

Green Car Reports tells us that ChargePoint is offering US EV buyers free home charging stations. Coulomb Technologies, the company behind the ChargePoint network of public charging stations, said this week it is offering a free wall-mounted 240 volt home charging station to drivers who buy or lease a BMW ActiveE, Chevrolet Volt, Nissan Leaf, Ford Focus or Transit Connect, or SmartForTwo EV. The program is only available in certain US markets.  Details at the ChargePoint website here.

just-auto enlightens us about what it is like to own a Nissan Leaf as does The Norman Transcript here. The Times Colonist tells us what it is like to own a Mitsuibisi i-MEV while girlracer gives us a drive in a Renault Fluence Z.E.

LS Cable & System Ltd., a maker of electrical wiring, has set up 17 electric car-charging stations across South Korea for state-run agencies and municipalities reports The Korean Herald.  The stations have high-speed direct current chargers that can charge Hyundai Motor’s BlueOn for 140 km in 30 minutes. The BlueOn is Korea’s first midsize electric vehicle. Hyundai supplied some 250 BlueOns last year to central and local governments.

International electricity utility, National Grid, is installing more than 30 electric charging stations in the US state of Massachusetts according to the Worcester Business Journal. See also here.

Smart Planet tells us that the largest real estate management company in the United States, Simon Property Group, has installed 55 Level 2 electric charging stations at its offices in that country. Those chargers can be found in the Washington, D.C., Chicago and San Francisco metro areas as well as in Indiana, Pennsylvania and Southern California. Level 2 chargers take six to eight hours for a full charge.

This week we find new electric charging stations in Montpelier, Vermont; Holland, Michigan and Portland, Oregon.

 

 

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