Environment

Honda Clarity Eco Score Explained

The Honda Clarity was first unveiled as a fuel-cell concept car in 2006. Honda manufactured the Clarity as fuel-cell only car from 2008 to 2014. In 2017, the all-electric (EV) and plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV) versions were released to great fanfare. Both models have been popular with drivers and have sold well. We discussed the Honda Clarity hack here and the best places to buy Honda Clarity rims here. Environmentally-conscious owners love the reduced dependence on gasoline and in turn, a reduction in their carbon footprint. Observant types will notice an “eco score” displayed on their dashboard. But what does this mean? A brief review of a few different forums reveals quite a bit of confusion. In an effort to help out our confused friends, here is the Honda Clarity eco score...

Out-Darwined by EVs, are Hybrids Going Extinct? Let’s Hope Not!

The progress electric cars have made in the last decade is, frankly, staggering. As recently as 2008, in fact, you could win engineering awards at SEMA for building a “hybrid” concept car that was basically a normal car with eight extra car batteries stuffed into the trunk. You can trust me on that, since building that very car is what got me started writing about “green speed”. Back then, the Toyota Prius– which was already several years old— was still considered fringe, but it worked in a time that getting Tesla off the ground seemed like an impossibility. That was then, though, and EVs have gotten so good that it kind of begs the question: are hybrids going extinct? The short answer seems to be: yes. More and more automakers seem to be skipping the &#...

Meet Andrew Ference: the NHL’s Mr. Green

Andrew Ference has long been known for his commitment to environmental causes. The Canadian defender has been a staunch advocate of all-electric vehicle (EV) ownership and other forms of green living. In 2018, Ference was hired to be the NHL’s first Director of Social Impact, Growth, and Fan Development, a position that will allow him to continue his environmental advocacy. Ference first became cognizant of the negative environmental effects that professional sports teams can have on the environment in 2003. In a series of conversations with prominent environmentalist Dr. David Suzuki, Andrew began to realize the potential he had to make a difference. In a 2009 interview with Samaritan Mag, Ference explained, “He was really the one who pushed me to use my voice as a hockey play...

Infographic: Toyota Set to Reduce Carbon Emissions 40% by 2022

With great power comes great responsibility– and, with its international engineering and manufacturing empire spanning six continents, it would be hard to argue that Toyota didn’t have great power. That’s why it’s so nice to see the giant automaker take corporate its responsibility seriously. Toyota’s Environmental Challenge 2050 goal of cutting global emissions from plant operations to zero globally by the year 2050 is massively optimistic, of course. To prove they’re serious, however, Toyota has made another commitment: cut its US carbon emissions 40% by 2022. “Toyota has long been defined by its commitment to responsible environmental practices, and we’re proud to build upon that great legacy today,” said Kevin Butt, General Manager ...

Destructive Mining: The Downside of Electric Vehicle Technology

Electric vehicle owners tend to also be rightfully concerned about our environment and how the negative effects of climate change are ravaging our planet. Many of us think of ourselves as climate warriors, fighting on the front lines of a war to change the way our fellow humans think of consumption and how damaging the over-consumption of fossil fuels can be for all of us. We imagine a world where oil companies no longer practice fracking or drill for oil around our coastlines and vehicles no longer require gasoline to power them. As altruistic as our motives may be, we must also recognize the damage that can be done due to our choices in transportation. One of the biggest issues with electric vehicle manufacturing is securing enough of the precious metals needed to manufacture the battery...

VW Says “Carbon Neutral” is the Only Way Forward

In the aftermath of VW’s multi-billion dollar diesel emissions cheating scandal that saw several executives face criminal charges and jail time, VW has been trying to reinvent itself as a clean, electric carmaker. It’s been making big moves, too. In addition to developing an entire family of VW and Audi electrics, it’s put big money aside to secure its battery supplies until at least 2023. Even with all that, the company still seems to have a credibility issue– and, as such, it’s released an official statement about its stance on global warming. Really. VW’s screed reads almost like a kid’s “What I Did on My Summer Vacation” theme, and VW’s execs really, really, really want you to know that they spent their summer vacation learnin...

Maersk Sets Net Zero Emissions Target for 2050

Member nations of the UN body charged with regulating ocean shipping announced, earlier this year, a new strategy to curb the industry’s massive impact on climate change. The UN asked for major shippers to commit to cutting their harmful carbon emissions 50% by the year 2050, by which time most of the ships currently in service will be scrapped. The Danish shipping giant, Maersk, is doing them one better: Maersk has committed to being fully carbon-neutral by 2050. The result of Maersk’s commitment could be huge, considering that shipping is traditionally responsible for about 800 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions per year. That’s according to Dan Rutherford, the marine and aviation program director of the International Council on Clean Transportation. “If you...

EICMA 2018: Honda Trail Bikes Get Fuel Injection

EICMA is known for its concept bike reveals and new product launches, and Honda didn’t disappoint, revealing a raft of new or updated products for 2019. We already covered the sporty new 2019 Honda CB650R, but now we’re shifting gears and playing a round of, “Roads? Where we’re going we don’t need- roads” with Honda’s CRF line of trail bikes. All of which are getting electronic fuel injection for 2019! They’re two of the basic tenets of Gas 2. “The best way to appreciate nature is to get out in it,” and, “Two wheels are better than four.” Honda’s small-displacement trail bikes deliver nearly triple-digit fuel economy and, thanks to that fancy new fuel injection, they’ll do so with lower emissions than ever ...

Volvo’s Ghent Factory Gets a Solar Upgrade

Volvo has made a number of commitments to reducing improving the Earth. Sometimes that means donating profits to help clean up the ocean, while other times that means reducing its own carbon footprint. This story is one of those latter cases, as Volvo announces the installation of 15,000 solar panels at its SPA platform car factory in Ghent, Belgium. The Belgian factory also uses wind power to supply around 11% of its power consumption, and in 2016 the factory introduced a heating system that reduced carbon emissions by 40%, saving 15,000 tons of CO2 per year. Ghent follows the company’s Skövde engine plant in Sweden– which was the first climate-neutral facility in Volvo’s global manufacturing network. You can check out the original press release, below, then let us know ...

Dethleffs New Self-propelled Electric Camper Wows in Düsseldorf

  You may recall last year the release of Dethleffs E.Home electric motorhome. The first-of-its-kind all electric camper was a veritable mobile solar generating station that would get you well over 100 miles out of the city, and charge itself while you camped for the trip back. Now the new towable E.Home Coco caravan trailer joins Dethleffs’ growing stable of ways to save and see the environment at the same time. Just like its larger sibling, the E.Home Coco comes with a bank of solar panels for recharge and power availability on the go. This tow trailer has a neat trick, though. It is self-propelled, meaning smaller and more eco-friendly vehicles can handle the caravan. Dethleffs is aiming for an all-electric camper experience, and the electric powered Coco can be towed by vehi...

Airstream Launches Off-road Ready Basecamp X

Whether they’re vintage models being restored by award-winning architects or just the latest unit off the assembly line, Airstreams are cool. They’re like old Vespa scooters or big Honda Gold Wings — they’re very much their own thing. And, if that thing speaks to you, nothing else will really do. That’s why any new Airstream is a thing to be celebrated, and why we’re celebrating the Airstream Basecamp X here, today. The Basecamp X starts off with the standard Airstream Basecamp, but adds a 3″ lift kit, stainless steel stone guards, front window protection, and new, blacked out wheels wrapped in Goodyear Wrangler all-terrain tires to improve traction on slippery surfaces. All of that is done in the name of going a little bit further off the beaten p...

Borg Uses Exhaust Heat to Improve Emissions, MPG

Exhaust gas re-circulation (EGR) is nothing new in automotive circles. Neither is the concept of trying to turn exhaust gas energy and heat into usable power. What is new, however, is using what would otherwise be waste heat to specifically heat up an engine at cold start– and that’s pretty exciting. “Until a cold engine reaches its optimal operating temperature, it is much less fuel efficient and generates higher emissions,” explains Joe Fadool, President and General Manager of BorgWarner’s Emissions & Thermal Systems department. The company’s new Exhaust Heat Recovery System (EHRS) will get internal combustion engines up to temperature faster than ever before, and help to reduce the NOx and diesel particulate matter (PM) emissions that have caused ...

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