OK.

Lance Armstrong pedalling a bike-driven generator can

produce about 350 watts and he can probably keep this

up for about 3 hours. That is, roughly, 1 kilowatt-hour.

If Lance drives to the gym in a Prius and he travels

10 miles round trip, he uses an average of about 10 HP

for a period of 10 minutes (assuming an unlikely average

speed of 60 MPH). At 746 watts/HP, this is 74,600 watt-min:

10 min * 10 HP * 746 watts

74,600 watt-min is 1243 watt-hours or 1.243 kWh

So, in ten minutes of driving, Lance uses more energy than

he can produce in 3 hours of pedalling.

Now, if it's YOU on the treadmill, how many watts continuous

can you produced for three hours?

If you power your car by pedalling a generator to charge

its batteries, you're going to have to pedal for, say,

one working shift in order to drive 10 miles back and

forth to work. Or, you could ride your bike for, say,

40 minutes each way.

We MUST get our heads around the notion of just how much

energy we are consuming. It's truly incredible. Think in

terms of reducing your energy consumption 10-fold in

your lifetime. Even THAT is probably not sustainable.

The fix we're in is so much worse than people think it is,

simply because they think it's quite normal to put 10 gallons

of gasoline in the car once or twice a week. The energy

content of that gasoline is just incredible; only since

the start of the industrial era have people been able to

consume energy at this rate. This has only been possible

because we have been burning fossil fuels created over a

span of millions of years during the course of a century.

Rainwater falling off the roof is not going to power your

next flight to Disneyworld. It's not going to get you to

the airport. In fact, it's barely going to get you out

of the driveway.

Life is going to change. Get used to it. Then figure out

how to enjoy it. That's not hard. Just imagine carfree cities.

Joel

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J.H. Crawford Carfree Cities

mailbox@... http://www.carfree.com