1. The seven suspects who may have contributed to the failure of GM’s EV1 program are: a. Customers (guilty)
a.i. Consumers wanted a three hundred mile range and eighty-five mile per hour speed on their electric cars but this was not plausible when running off of a battery. a.ii. When customers compare cars they don’t care much about the environmental risks they only care about the price, the miles per gallon, and the mileage range. Customers had a difficult time seeing the difference between regular cars and electric cars so there was not enough demand. b. Battery Technology (not guilty)
b.i. Batteries were too weak to make the car go as far as consumers were hoping so they bought the less expensive gasoline vehicles that could go the desired distance. c. Oil Companies (guilty)
c.i. Oil companies got very involved with electric cars because if everyone were to switch to battery operated vehicles, there would no longer being a large demand for gasoline. d. Car Companies (guilty)
d.i. The GM car didn’t seem to be catching on and there did not seem to see a profit in electric or hybrid cars so they didn’t see it as effective to keep manufacturing the car. e. Government (guilty)
e.i. Government officials did not approve of the electric car so they did nothing to assist General Motors in selling it. e.ii. President Carter supported clean energy but President Nixon cared so little about clean energy he had the solar panels taken off the roof of the White House. f. C.A.R.B. - California Air Resources Board (guilty).
f.i. Lloyd was elected chairman of the board four months before they got rid of the electric car and he persisted to demolish it. g. Hydrogen Fuel Cells (guilty)
g.i. Hydrogen Fuel Cells seemed more appealing to consumers because Shell stations could provide hydrogen. g.ii. Hydrogen Fuel Cells had General Motors beat because their cars could travel 100-125 miles per fill up while the EV could only travel about 75 miles. Also, hydrogen cars have about three to four times more energy than a car running on batteries. 2. The suspect I feel is most responsible is the consumers because they only look at the simple facts; they couldn’t care less whether or not their car is destroying the environment. Consumers only care about the price, mileage, and miles per gallon of a vehicle which all lacked on the EV because car companies saw it fair to lose a bit of the “basic car features” in order to improve the environment. 3. The nickel metal hydride battery enabled the GM EV1 to have a real world range of 250 km and the Chevrolet S10 achieved a range of 110 to 130 km with full charge and can usually last for years on end depending on how many times you have to recharge the full battery. Today, nickel metal hydride batteries are commonly used for cameras, camcorders, cell phones, pagers, medical instruments, etc. An interview published last year in the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists said that there was going to be a new approach to photovoltaic thin-film production that would allow factories to make enough solar panels in a year to produce at least one gigawatt of electricity annually—roughly the scale of a nuclear power plant—at the price of coal. The argument for thin-film solar panels is that thin-film solar can actually be cheaper than one dollar a watt, low price solar panels are opening up new markets (which could lead to a surge in demand), and the fastest, cheapest way to meet that demand could be building thin-film solar factories, since you can build those factories for a third as much as silicon solar panel factories. Although this seems beneficial, the main arguments against thin-film solar panels are the cost of everything else that goes into the final cost of solar power (including installation costs, which are now higher than the cost of panels themselves), you can save much more money if higher efficiency solar panels are put in because the company would have to buy less panels, and...
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