Monday, May 15, 2006

There's Interest Groups, Activist Groups.. and Statistical Groupings

It's official. 100% of middle aged family men would be quite happy to never use the car again.

This is based on a sample of one (me), and did not involve any complicating factors like keeping the job going, doing the weekly 'big' shop' and getting the boys to the middle of a forest at the weekend for their night hike. Then, I fear, I think I might be one of the 100% who felt the car was an essential and could not be done without into the forseeable future.

So, what are we to make of 75 percent back new climate law ?

Well, it's a bit of a 'why not?' at the moment, up there with 99% of us recycle regularly... apparently (as Jimmy Carr would say, eyebrow cocked, in that biscuit ad).

But is such a thing worth trotting out?

75% of the UK population may support anything nice and fluffy if asked, but getting from 1000 people to the thoughts of 30 million seems a leap. Much less actions.

And it doesn't mention, but I also wonder to what extent this survey added the bit... 'and you will be required to do this in future, and it will cost you this much extra."

Wishing it doesn't make it so, and I for one tend to lean against pressure to make me bend when its coming from a direction I can get my head around.

In the bag

An almost throwaway snippet in the Daily Mirror a few days ago:
'Tesco vow to go green': Tesco is to make all its carriers [sic] bags
biodegradable by September. And it aims to slash the four billion
plastic bags it gives away free by a quarter within two years in a
new green initiative. But Lim Dem Chris Huhne said: "Biodegradable
bags themselves can have an adverse impact.'

That's it, verbatim. For such a small piece, I found a lot going on
in there.

One is the significance that only now are they tackling this issue. 4
billion bags!!!! Anyway, at least they are now. Next up is the quite
fair point Mr. Huhne made. I have still to get to the bottom of this,
but the last I heard was that biodegrading let off greenhouse gasses,
and that is high on my 'first thing to stop' list. Plus the fact that
'once they are gone, they're gone'. Of course not having them is the
optimal option, but surely recycling is better?

I'm interested to find out what this new initiative may be. Maybe the
phrase ' gives away free...' is a hint. What's the betting
there's a cost coming? The do need the money, after all.

Power Plant

I love the internet. Especially when it works. Because I was (again) paying catch up on my reading and came across something I wanted to blog about, but thought I'd missed the e-window online. But, no. A few clicks and there it was, lovingly preserved. And allowing you to wonder why on earth I'd want to have anything to do with the Koenigsegg CCX, as reviewed a week ago by one J. Clarkson.

Well I don't really want one, if that's a help. Sideways at 180mph is not high on my 'must-have' list for a car. I have a wife, 2.2 kids (trust me, they eat 110%) and aspire only to get from A to B with my family and/orstuff in comfort and safety. Ok, I want to do it fast and fun too, which is why I'm still keen on a Saab Aero, because they do all the necessary and still squirt past a lorry nice and easy. I doubt a Prius does. But the minute something like it does, along with all the other requirements of domestic and business travel, I'm up for it (in fact I have a vague recollection that Saab do have such a thing).

And then there's the small matter of cost. Forgetting about buying for a moment, the other major bit is fuel. Which is what brings me to the Kthingie review. two things caught my eye.

One was that it did 16.6mpg. Which is not great. Except my R-reg Volvo does only about twice that, and has an engine about 1/3 the size producing 1/4 the power. It also cost about 1/20th as much, so everything is relative, but it just seemed pretty efficient is all.

But the thing that really perked me up was seeded (pun intended) in the middle: 'now with their own Swedish-made twin-supercharged 4.7 litre V8, the CCX. This is a very powerful engine. On normal petrol you get 806bhp. But here’s the good bit. If you tune it to run on eco-friendly biofuel, you get more than 900bhp.'

Not only is it good for the environment, but it's good for the adrenaline junkies too. Now, let's hope we see a bit more of this in a car I can actually aspire to owning.