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>After the nightmare of the last eight years I never thought that the federal government could be a role model for the people it represents (in large part it still is not). However, the fed is upgrading its fleet of vehicles to make it more efficient with the help of the artfully named American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). Obama will be whisked around town in a compact hybrid-electric vehicle and senators will be transported between buildings on Compressed Natural Gas buses. Can you imagine Orrin Hatch and Mitch McConnell rubbing elbows on a crowded bus with the liberal greens from across the aisle on their way to a joint session of congress? Probably their worst nightmare. The federal government has spent $300 million on hybrid and alternative fuel vehicles which will save 16.7 million gallons of fuel, $40 million in fuel costs and 334 millions pounds of greenhouse gases over seven years – And that ladies and gentlemen is how you spend $300 million to save $40 million. If we got returns like that on our defense budget we would be funding China’s growth!

As I have discussed previously, there are still issues surrounding alternative fuels disrupting the food supply (ethanol) and electric and hybrid vehicles using toxic heavy metals (lithium, nickle) but this is a step in the right direction to reduce dependence on fossil fuels, especially oil. I’ll one up the fed. I dare the government to double fuel economy standards for themselves and the rest of us and put a sizable tax on gasoline to pay for research and greener transportation methods like trains, light rail and buses in suburbs and cities across the country. Yes We Can!