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Tue May 1, 2018, 05:21 PM

Wow. This is different. CNN actually notices there might be an ethical problem with your Tesla.

Is there such a thing as an ethical electric car?

Dirty Energy

As long as we're all "green" in the United States - our electric cars, our solar cells, our wind turbines - well - as long as we're "green" who gives a rat's ass about poor people, child slavery, any of that unpleasant stuff?

We're "green..."

Or maybe not. Despite all of us who have broken our arms patting ourselves on the back for being "green," last week we were at 411.68 ppm of the dangerous fossil fuel waste CO2 in the atmosphere, as opposed to 387.45 ten years ago.

I wonder how much of the two trillion bucks we just spent in the last ten years on "green" wind turbines and "green" solar cells went to educate the third world children who work our metal mines.

A lot, ya think?

I'm sure Elon Musk is all over it, since he's a goddamned hero, as I hear every time is holy name is mentioned.

We may be amused about public lying by the orange nightmare, but we're less interested in how we lie to ourselves. And that my friends, is a problem.

Have a nice "hump day" tomorrow.

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Reply Wow. This is different. CNN actually notices there might be an ethical problem with your Tesla. (Original post)
NNadir May 2018 OP
procon May 2018 #1
NNadir May 2018 #6
wasupaloopa May 2018 #2
PubliusEnigma May 2018 #3
Eko May 2018 #4
NNadir May 2018 #8
Eko May 2018 #5
hunter May 2018 #7
NNadir May 2018 #9
hunter May 2018 #12
d_r May 2018 #10
NNadir May 2018 #11

Response to NNadir (Original post)

Tue May 1, 2018, 05:56 PM

1. Is there a current workable alternative that you have in mind?

Doing nothing isn't an option, but is it a start to say we are trying, using the most efficacious practices available, to make a difference? Ever year things improve and get a little better, and there's no telling what direction new tech will take us. As with any major change, all the R&D, the ancillary support structures take time to catch up, and they will eventually, but all this is just the starting point. Just like when new innovations were introduced in the past, the lure of profits will be the driving force behind the tip of the spear.

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Response to procon (Reply #1)

Tue May 1, 2018, 06:35 PM

6. I read and think about energy in all of my spare time.

If you're actually interested in what I think, you might start with my journal here: NNadir's Journal.

I'd guess between 70% to 80% of what I've written in this space refers to the primary scientific literature, and 90% of that is about energy.

As for doing "something" and doing "nothing..."

Doing something that's worse than nothing makes a difference. The question is, "what kind of difference?"

I've spent thirty years considering what has been done, what is being done, what might be done, and, as quixotic as it might be, what should be done.

I have lots of ideas, but they're, um, unpopular.

I certainly know what might work, and I also know what won't work. This bourgeois consumer bullshit about wind powered and solar powered electric cars is horseshit, basically, as even CNN can note much to my suprise, potentially criminal horseshit. It is simply exporting environmental degradation to the poorest of the poor, those who can least afford it.

The most detailed summary of what I think should be done is here: Current Energy Demand; Ethical Energy Demand; Depleted Uranium and the Centuries to Come

I'm an old man, deeply upset about the world my generation is leaving behind. We were pigs.

I've lived a long time, and seen some very stupid things, and indeed participated in stupid things, but without a doubt, these are the most stupid times in which I've lived.

Look at those kids in those cobalt mines! How much hope might they have for a better world? Do you think they'll ever dream of winning the lottery and becoming a millionaire or billionaire who can buy one of Musk's idiotic cars and drive around on freeways thinking, "Look at me! Look at me! I'm green!"

Don't worry; be happy. I'm sure you're working very hard to be "green."

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Response to NNadir (Original post)

Tue May 1, 2018, 05:58 PM

2. Several months ago I read somewhere

 

that the materials in our electric car batteries comes from South America and that there is something very negative about processing it.

I donít recall the facts at this time.

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Response to NNadir (Original post)

Tue May 1, 2018, 06:07 PM

3. What kind of car do you drive?

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Response to PubliusEnigma (Reply #3)

Tue May 1, 2018, 06:21 PM

4. Of course

NNadir drives a nuclear car, and those that don't must support carbon pollution and killing people.

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Response to PubliusEnigma (Reply #3)

Tue May 1, 2018, 10:16 PM

8. A Sherman Tank. And you?

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Response to NNadir (Original post)

Tue May 1, 2018, 06:24 PM

5. Do they still use Samarium

in nuclear reactor control rods? Gadolinium for shielding in nuclear reactors? Cause those are rare earth metals also.

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Response to NNadir (Original post)

Tue May 1, 2018, 08:03 PM

7. The Idaho Cobalt Project expects to begin production next year.

http://www.idahocobalt.com/project/overview

No child labor, but the environmental impacts are still large.

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Response to hunter (Reply #7)

Tue May 1, 2018, 10:31 PM

9. It will produce 1200 tons per year for 12.5 years, according to the link.

Congo, according to the USGS, produces 63.000 tons per year.

I'll bet that Musk claims all his cobalt comes from Idaho and Canada. So will everybody else.

People will keep cheering for Musk and his car for millionaires and billionaires, and just to keep us happy, he'll launch another cobalt laced Tesla into deep space.

No one will be buying Congo cobalt, and so we'll all be totally mystified that those kids keep digging it, but they will keep digging it, even though no one will admit to buying what they dig.

Stable cobalt is monoisotopic, and thus it is extremely challenging to identify its source.

Don't worry, be happy. It's all for our "renewable" dream.

We renew our rhetoric daily about our grand renewable future, even if the amount of wind and solar electricity produced remains what it's been for half a century, trivial.

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Response to NNadir (Reply #9)

Thu May 3, 2018, 05:31 PM

12. It will be like dog food. Certified child labor free cobalt the first ingredient.

Increasingly questionable sources for all the rest.

Chicken, water sufficient for processing, corn meal, meat by-products...

Lucky a third ethically sourced cobalt.




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Response to NNadir (Original post)

Wed May 2, 2018, 06:33 AM

10. interesting

that of all the companies reviewed in the article, BMW, Volkswagon, Daimler, Mercedes, Apple, Renault, and Samsung, you chose to focus solely on Tesla. Is your point that there is no "truly green" alternative? Then yes, I agree. Or are you grinding an ax against Tesla?

This is what the article said about Tesla

Tesla (TSLA), which uses several pounds of cobalt in each of its car batteries, told CNN it sourced most of its cobalt from suppliers outside the DRC and was "committed to only sourcing responsibly-produced materials."

"Tesla performs on-site audits to the best of our ability during the sourcing and vetting process for suppliers, to view operations and methods of risk management," it said in a statement. But it did not respond when asked to confirm its cobalt was 100% free from child labor.

A Tesla 2017 financial filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission acknowledged that the company's supply chain wasn't watertight when it came to tracking raw materials.

"Many of our [direct] suppliers do not purchase all their raw materials directly and instead obtain them from downstream suppliers and sub-suppliers. Therefore, reliably determining the origin [of materials] is a difficult task," it said.

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Response to d_r (Reply #10)

Wed May 2, 2018, 07:24 AM

11. I have a problem with the mindless enthusiasm...

...for Tesla on the nominal left.

The claim that there is something esteemable about a luxury consumer item for rich people is frankly obscene.

Let's be clear on something. There is absolutely no way to trace the source of cobalt. With many elements having more than one isotope it is sometimes possible by detecting very small deltas in distribution, but cobalt has one and only one isotope.

Electric cars impact on the environment depends on how the electricity to power them is produced. Overwhelmingly electricity is made from fossil fuels and the proportion so made is growing, not falling.

As for Musk's marketing, and subsidy seeking, there is no way in hell a car dependent on cobalt mining will be sustainable. Thus his big lie about a mainstream electric car is Trumpian in its dishonesty.

If he had a way to eliminate cobalt, he'd be doing it.

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