TODAY'S GOOD NEWS ... Sept 30, 2005

"Two Scoops."
Once again we bring you a double feature.
We're trying to keep this thing brief, but the
stories keep on a comin'! Please enjoy and
send us your comments anytime. Thanks -
GCS.



FEATURE 1: A 50 City Plan

Breaking Ground
Way down here in Austin Tx, there's a groundbreaking movement going on: PHEVs. P-What? P (plug in) H (hybrid) E (electric) V (vehicles) just might change the way we all go about living & driving. The cars are hybrid gas/electric vehicles & their receiving top-shelf support from the city's mayor & political leaders... GM already makes one.

So What does a PHEV do?
Save gas. Er -- uh, sorry, make that -- ELIMINATE GAS. In short, the car/van/truck/etc has a high capacity battery, which can be charged via an extension cord plugged through your kitchen window. Sound crazy? Here's a short list why the City of Austin takes this project so seriously.

Short List of Benefits:
  • Reduced dependence on foreign oil
  • Increased dependence on local energy providers
  • Getting around town for as little as 70 cents a gallon
  • Prevention of the global warming gases & other air pollutions related to today's gas burning automobiles

    Why is This Such a Big Deal?
    A coalition of US mayors from our 50 largest cities is behind this idea. Their goal is to make purchase orders, which build sufficient demand for the mass production of these incredibly sensible vehicles. The initiative, led by Austin's current mayor Will Wynn, received it's first press release in late August of this year. Also - The plan is endorsed by former CIA director James Woolsey & former Secretary of State George Schultz, among others.



    The Good News? -- Feature One.
    This initiative is an economic revolution. In an era of denial related to transportation issues, fuel costs & pollution, this city-level PHEV plan comes as a refreshing & seemingly bold vision. Realization of the plan is the first step towards unified dissolution of the gasoline economy as we know it. Doing so will make our collective lives healthier & more economically stable. Additionally, because the cars are plugged in, the concept easily lends itself to strengthening the Clean Electricity market. Here in Austin, the talk was all about city-run "recharging stations," which featured electricity powered by wind, solar & hydro. Imagine -- a car running on wind power...

    Here's the transportation future we're shooting for:
    Cleanly Fueled, High Efficiency Vehicles, Nationwide. Now that's good common sense!

    to learn more, follow the picture links below:
    AUSTIN ENERGY - PHEV or TREEHUGGER NEWS - PHEV



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    FEATURE 2: The Revolution IS Being Televised

    Real Reality Television
    ...What do Daryl Hannah, Miss Texas, Jack Johnson, Jackson Browne, Ed Begley, Jr. & Alexandra Paul (Baywatch) have in common? They all love that COOLFUEL guy (Australian Shaun Murphy).

    Shaun's new show, COOLFUEL ROADTRIP, may be more Crocodile Dundee than Che Guevarra, but we still give him props. What's it all about? Cool-looking vehicles, one whacky Australian & ... semi-famous people!

    Watch as Shaun (& his dog) travel 16,000 miles in a variety of vehicles powered by solar, ethanol, biodiesel, electricity, corn whiskey -- even food, never using a drop of gasoline! Tune in for corn-powered airplanes, "whiskey powered" choppers (as in Harley Davidson), "food eating" hummers (as in "lunch"), ethanol powered BMWs, & more. Our favorite is the little yellow car that goes from 0 to 60 in 3.6 seconds (see photo above). It's electric! ... meaning it could also be powered via windmill...

    We applaud these guys for trying to make clean fuel bigger, faster, & "more American." We wish this show much success. You can check out a clip at their website.



    The Good News? -- Feature Two.
    COOLFUEL ROADTRIP proves to everybody watching that petroleum-gas and diesel are just 2 of the fuel options we have for racing, road-tripping, flying, commuting and looking cool.

    click on the picture link COOLFUEL ROADTRIP, to learn more.
    airing nationwide on UPN, FOX, ABC & various independent affiliates.
    disclaimer - we have not yet seen the show. hope you like it!

    *brought to us via - Stacy Neef, Coordinator, Central Texas Clean Cities. (Thanks Stacy!)



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    alternate name for this newsletter:
    "The Revolution Might Be Hybrid-ized..."

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    MORE GOOD NEWS

    Here's 7 more things to feel good about.



    1. Senate Reverses Course on Global Warming
    "The U.S. Senate has passed a resolution that finally recognizes the enormous problem of global warming and declares that our nation must enact mandatory limits on the pollution that causes it. The breakthrough resolution, which was supported by key Republicans and Democrats, sends a clear signal to the White House, which has strongly oposed mandatory cuts..."
    *via the NRDC ("Nature's Voice" Sept/Oct 2005)
    click on the picture link NRDC (below) to learn more.





    2. Viva La Manhattan
    This year's National Solar Tour (the 10th annual) features New York's other finest: green buildings. Here's a teaser...
  • "You can see the geothermal heating system at 1400 Fifth Avenue."
  • "You can see the solar thermal (hot water) system at 140 West 4th Street (between 6th & McDougal)."
  • "You can see energy efficient apartments which use 15% of the fuel for heating and hot water and 50% of the electricity for common areas of a typical building" --- built AT NO EXTRA COST.
    Better hurry! It's tommorrow, Oct. 1st.
    for information click, on the picture link Greenhome NYC.
    *via Dean Zias, Outreach Coordinator @ NYC Energy $mart Communities. Thanks, Dean!





    3. AND, AND, AND -
    Hold the Phone, Solar Party in da House
    "CitySol" - sponsored in large part by our friends @ BrightPower.biz - (NYC) is tommorrow, too! Celebrate a "sustainable product marketplace and all day solar powered music event on the East River." Good stuff. Head on down there! Enjoy a little sun power!
    Oct 1 1pm-7pm FREE Stuyvesant Cove Park (E 23rd @ the East River).
    *visit Bright Power! picture link below.





    4. HYBRIDS GETTING HOT..
    They're everywhere.
    Check out this article from the New York Times Magazine.
    *via Doug Marcis. Thanks, Doug!
    click on picture link for more info, "High Performance Hybrids" (below).





    5. That's What I'm Talkin' About
    --> World's First Truly Sustainable Power System Built in Toronto <--
    750 kW Wind Turbine in downtown Toronto will product hydogen. The HyLYZER is the city's first public hydrogen refueling station, intended for fuel cell vehicles. The facility will produce 65 kg of hydrogen every day (enough to refuel 20 vehicles).

    Being that wind is a "clean power source" & hydrogen fuel's only emission is drinkable water - this could well be the world's FIRST TRULY SUSTAINABLE POWER SYSTEM. No pollution, lots of energy.
    (good common sense!)
    *contributed via John Sarver's "energy tidbits" newsletter, August, 05. Thanks, John!





    6. FIRST DOMESTIC CARBON TAX
    New Zealand has become the first country in the world to address global warming. New Zealanders will now pay an extra NZ$2.90 a week for electricity, petrol & gas. According to the minister responsible for climate change policy, this will add about 6% to household energy prices & 9% to business prices. The intiative is expected to help the economy in the long run.
    *also contributed via John Sarver's "energy tidbits" August, 05.
    contact us if you would like to be on John's mailing list. Thanks again, John!





    7. FREDRICKSBURG, TX
    We had a super time at the recent "Texas Renewable Energy Round Up" (Sept. 23 - 25). Despite Rita & competition from The Black Crowes & Coldplay (performing down the road @ Austin's ACL Fest) attendance was in the thousands. Our booth ran-eth over with loads of great people from all across the state. We loved meeting people, selling stuff, being there, hanging out -- and can't wait until next year's event. Job well-done. Thanks to Russell Smith & everyone involved!

    *Special Notice to our most valuable volunteers (MVV's):
    **Sue Searles**, Don Searles, Jarle Lillemoen, & Mo Pair. 2 ... much ... fun. Thanks, ya'll.



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    THIS MONTH'S RETAIL BARGAIN:

    10% OFF EVERYTHING!
    We're feeling good. From Now through Halloween (Oct. 31) enter the code words "I Read The Good News" at check out & we'll deduct an extra 10% off your entire purchase. Please Note: Our shopping cart is not yet set-up to show these special savings at check out. However - we're good for it. Please read on...

    Here's 2 Easy Steps to Get Your Extra Discount:
    1) Place your order. Enter the code phrase "I Read The Good News" in the instructions box at checkout.
    2) Upon receipt of your order, Good Comon Sense will send you a special return email confirming your purchase & the extra savings. Order will ship & we'll charge your card at the 10% off discounted price. Easy!

    please let us know if you have any questions.



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    SWITCH TO CLEAN ENERGY

    It's an historic opportunity. Our current electricity system is the biggest polluter in the world. By switching to "Green Power / Clean Energy" you can eliminate your home or office's most detrimental impacts on the environment. If you haven't done it, please consider the benefits for you, your family & all.

    This is your chance to help fend off global warming, asthma & more. You can find a clean energy provider today via our webpage. Please click on the "Switch to Clean Energy" picture link below. Nationwide service!



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    As always -- Please feel free to pass this letter around & Thanks for your support!
    - Good Common Sense



  • Click to enlarge
    Austin Energy! - PHEV

    Click to enlarge
    Treehugger News - PHEV

    Click to enlarge
    COOLFUEL ROADTRIP

    Click to enlarge
    NRDC, re: Global Warming

    Click to enlarge
    Greenhome NYC

    Click to enlarge
    Bright Power, NYC

    Click to enlarge
    "High Performance Hybrids"

    Switching To Clean Energy
    Switching To Clean Energy

    Pursuing safe, clean, green sources of energy!


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