September 18, 2009 |
If you think all hybrid cars are like the Toyota Prius -- mirthless, ugly hair shirts of green conscience -- BMW would like you to meet its Vision: A stealth submarine of a car, lower than a boxing foul, all folded geometry and LED tracer lights. The signature BMW grille glows blue like a reactor cooling pond. The transparent doors open like dragonfly wings. The all-wheel-drive Vision sport coupe is the Usain Bolt of hybrid cars: 0-60 mph in under 4.8 seconds, top speed of 155 mph, 356 horsepower, and handling and braking comparable to the company's brain-melting M3 coupe.
September 1, 2009 |
Imagine trying to market a product that most Americans regard as old and obsolete, that is remembered -- if at all -- as low-class and low-tech, noisy and noisome, and whose most notable advocates are truck drivers with prominent trouser cleavage. CB radio? An excellent guess, but no. Diesel, the oilier cousin of gasoline, dominates the European auto market, where fuel prices hover around $7 a gallon. Diesel is about 25% to 40% more fuel-efficient than gasoline, with commensurate per-mile reductions in carbon.
May 4, 2012 |
WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration moved to control the injection of millions of gallons of diesel deep underground during hydraulic fracturing, the controversial oil and gas development technique that avoided oversight by the Environmental Protection Agency because of a loophole created under President George W. Bush. Under the Energy Policy Act of 2005, hydraulic fracturing got an exemption from EPA regulation under the Safe Drinking Water Act because of what many have called the Halliburton Loophole.
May 13, 2010
Jane Smiley, the California author of a dozen wildly different books, tackles half a century of events in the life of Margaret Early, a plain girl who gets married off to an eccentric scientist, in "Private Life." The pair move to San Francisco, where they suffer a series of internal and external disasters, but the knowledge that Margaret has married a madman is what keeps the pages turning. The Washington Post has called "Private Life" a "quantum leap" for this already accomplished writer, who will sign her latest work.
March 21, 2012 |
The pain at the pump can be felt in China too. The government on Tuesday raised retail prices for gasoline and diesel fuel for the second time in less than six weeks in an attempt to keep pace with soaring crude oil prices. Chinese motorists are now paying $4.43 a gallon for 90-octane fuel — nearly equal to the $4.45-a-gallon average for mid-grade fuel in California, according to AAA. In contrast with the U.S., retail pump prices in China are set by central authorities, in part to maintain social stability.
March 13, 2012 |
Retail gasoline and diesel prices continued to rise in California and across much of the nation over the last week. Analysts are concerned that rising energy costs would be bad for the economy because more expensive gasoline affects how much Americans have left over to spend on other products, and higher diesel prices could boost the price of other items that are produced or transported using diesel. In California, the average price of a gallon of regular gasoline climbed 1.8 cents to $4.376, an increase of 42.2 cents a gallon since the same time last year.