your ExuberantPantaphobia guide.....


Tell The Truth - they teach it in Kindergarten, FFS

First!!Greenest!!Best!Fastest!Cheapest!!! "Step right up (suckers)...."

You wanna do something good for the planet? I mean really good? Well it's easy. STOP BULLSHITTING!!! Really, it's that easy. But in case you don't gestalt this-- let me explain what I mean: If you've read this LJ for some time you know I take umbrage to overselling, and hyperbole, and people who are too lazy to see that they aren't the "first" when they shove out their PR blasts telling us that they have "the first--- (fill in the blank-- first solar jacket, first PHEV, first solar panel...).... Why do I have such a hate on for this flim-flamery? Well it's easy to see really-- you oversell a green product, the consumer takes it home, finds that it does not meet their expectations, and then they become a spokesperson for the "don't bother with that Green BS" campaign. 'Cause they got burnt.

Haven't y'all ever heard of underselling??

Case in point is the whole hacked-climatologist scandal that is now turning AGW into a four-letter word... If those guilty parties (and they do exist on any side of the political spectrum) actually undersold, avoided hyperbole, and were transparent with what they know and what thy can't yet tell-- then the über-right wouldn't have all that ammo that they now have in droves..

But what got me all pissed off about this this morning you ask? Well it's because of some site called EcoMii. Which to be honest looks like oh, about 50 other green sites online. I got sent there because of something i was looking for (which they didn't have, BTW, no matter how good their SEO is). What really tweaked me tho was this; in their site's "Who Are We" section" they had this gem: "Todd O’Donald brings more than 13 years of experience in the interactive media industry to his role as CEO and co-founder of ecomii, the most popular ‘green’ lifestyle destination online."

Most Popular Green Site???? Really? It made me go check out Alexa. Really, is this the most popular green lifestyle destination? Really? Well Alexa agrees with me-- not by a freaking longshot! According to Alexa EcoMii's ranking is 47,784 and yesterday they reached 0.0007% of the global internet. Hearst Corp.'s Daily Green does better than that (ranked at 16,000) and Mother Nature News - celebrating its 1st-year anniversary January 9th, and started by Rolling Stone keyboardist Chuck Leavell-- is already more 'popular' ranking at 11,240 and yesterday reaching 0.014% of the global net. And [arguably the most popular green lifestyle destination] is ranked 2,712 and yesterday they reached 0.094% of the global internet. So, Todd, what did you learn in those 13 years in 'interactive media' did you learn that it's cool in the green world to talk at people as if they are idiots? As if they can't use google? As if they are sheeple? Because LOHAS consumers are MORE savvy than the mean, and more loyal than a tween to a pop-tart. And they don't like being told what to think. So telling green consumers that you are the most popular destination when that obviously isn't the case is just more hyperbolic bullshitting. And now, you are branded with the scarlet letter (or at least with the greenwash letter)

If your system takes TWO DAYS to install don't sell it as a 1/2 day installation! If it amortizes in two years say that, don't say 18 months! If you can get 60km on a charge, don't say 80km* (*driving under 45kmh). Really it's not that tough. I am sure your local chamber of commerce of Better Business org will have plenty for you to read up if you aren't clear on the concept-- but really, unless you wanna see more pics like below, can we stop the bullshit already?

time flies...

My tenure as in-house green guy at that green living magazine/show/energy/whatnot company has long past, and as they say, onwards and upwards, right? And i think after that stint, I probably won't be writing as much ever again (nothing against it, but it's not my main thang). Here are my favorite articles i got to write for them. They're kinda funny if you've been reading my LJ for some time, and then you see the way editors change the voice to suit the publication. So if you want to see a neutered version of my rants + raves, here's 1) E-assist bikes, 2) The Purolator Quicksider 3)He Shots He Scores Greener Hockey! 4) Is Your T-Shirt Toxic? 4) Resuscitating T-shirts and 5) the Oscar for green awards goes to...


Real High Anxiety

i was just reading all week-- a lot of folks in dark blue suits writing about green shit, er, "clean tech." And i gotta say most of it was so L-A-M-E. I mean this stuff was in top notch pubs, like James & James whose R.E. World has been a close friend forever-- until this guy from Merrile Lynch pooped all over it. I mean he had one cool concept in his screed; an economic look at carbon and hydrogen in a really novel way, how we keep moving from greater carbon-to-hydrogen ratios to much greater H-to-C. Like from Wood (10:1 carbon for every hydrogen molecule), to coal 2:1, to oil 1:2 to natural gas at 4:1.It was a cool idea, but he got two more pages after that, which he basically filled with sophistic diarrhea. And it goes all over the map-- from how climate change might lead to the melting of the snowcaps of Kilimanjaro (really, is that the worse that's going to happen?) and of course, how we need much more nuclear power (at least that was parenthesized by a shout out to solar/wind. Zzzzz... But then I woke up because all of the sudden there was this din of chatter equal to a heated cackling on The View. And it was all these ev specialists, and consultants, and writers going on and on about Range Anxiety

And I think really, it's the silliest thing. To begin with, even 20 lead acid batteries (esp. if u add a small 400watt ultra-capacitor) is more than enough for 75% of commuters. That costs, what, 15-25% of the cost of the Volt's batteries. And the fact that the price of batteries keeps going down annually, new batts keep showing up (zinc air, metal air, carbon nanotube, vanadium redox, all that stuff we've already talked about). So Range Anxiety is not really going to be an issue.

But at the same time, we all wanna go on a road trips, or follow our favorite band across the country (not to mention the traveling sales people, and others who have to drive for 14 hours a day), so being able to drive long distances in an EV without having to wait 4 hours to recharge for every 2 hours of driving is an issue. That's why people are like mad into stuff like BetterPlace (or the betterplace clones already out there), eEstors...

BUT! I don't want to rent/lease robot-changeable batteries just because the batteries are too expensive ....or to placate one's range-anxiety. And you don't need eEstor to get a 5 min charge! imagine if Exxon Shell et al deployed posicharge chargers in all their service stations. Now! But then again, do we really need gas stations? even if they all somehow morphed into EVcharging, even with robots who change the batteries for us? This may sound crazy because no deal is even in place yet, but i already know who is going to have a big part of the charger business up here in Canada. It's a company called Tim Hortons. Right now they sell donuts and coffee.

And they are more than a Canadian institution, almost canonized for some reason. But mark my words, in Canada during phase one of vehicle electrification, "Timmies" will be the #1 place to charge your EV while driving from city to city, or to just 'top up' while driving around the suburbs doing errands. They won't be the only one (McDonalds is already leading the way), but they are dotting the highways and everywhere in the burbs.. And they won't be alone, and they wont be the first-- McDonalds already started, WalMart will get in on it, and you're going to see more of this everywhere.

But i don't really care all that much about whats going to be in 2-10 years, I'm way more curious about the next 8-20: Gimme my wi-power!! and send it to my charger from antennas! And/or gimme inductive strips along a quarter of the streets, and highways (and bill me for what i use!). At the very least, put the inductive strips on the street where parking is permitted (and new parking meters, usually with solar panels, are all wifi-enabled) and let me pay for my parking and a charge at the same time. Cause just because you can make a battery pack that will give you 300km on a charge doesn't mean you have to be all hoggy with those rare materials. If/when we have wi-charging and inductive strips, everyone would be just as happy with $4k of LiFePO4's as with one of these 'fully charged' EVs. So that's what I want us to do: envision inductive charging strips in the roads (just like those fancy new inductive mats for your pda, psp, ipod...). Imagine dotting the highways on an electric car or electric motorcycle with an unlimited amount of electricity! Because it's just as possible and just as real as any of these other techs we know of. And probably a lot cheaper in the long run...


..can't believe I'm gonna say this but seeing how there's rarely enough time to write proper stuff for this here LJ anymore =( but how I do still love aggregating the cool-ass green goodies; if you's like, you are more than invited to Follow Me On Twitter

Fox Appointed to Guard the Henhouse. And The Pseudo Green Blogs Gush With Gleeful Apotheosis.

Monsanto VP chosen by Obama to be FDA's new food safety czar

....and the bullshitters say "Hooo-ray!"

I've tried to like The Daily Green. I really have. I like some of their writers, and sometimes they have cute stories. So I've overlooked the fact that it's a Hearst publication --I've made no secret of my lurve for slick Willie and the Hearst clan, yuck, What an ecological blight that family caused (along with robber barons Lamont du Pont and Andrew Mellon). So even though it's built on a foundation of shit, I still had looked to Daily Green as a group of people (not a group Hearst descendants) who were earnest in their desire to 'green the world'

But you gotta keep one eye open, right? Especially when their sincerity is already hard to believe. Who can tell if they have any other agendas? Well today it's pretty easy to tell if they have any other agendas, as they roll the green carpet and stick tongue out to give a rim job to Michael Taylor who just began his new --Obama appointed-- job as special assistant to the FDA Commissioner for food safety. Bad enough this guy is now in charge of our safety. Worse yet a supposed "Green" journal/blog publishes a thousand word screed telling us greenies that we should not only love this guy, but really his bad rap isn't really a bad rap, heck, he's a saint! He's streamlined food safety (the guy who didn't want meat packers to slow down their machines to look for e-coli), he cares, really he cares, they say....

Who is Mike, anyway? Well, obviously for starters he's a lawyer. He's also a former VP of a little company called Monsanto(!) He's the reason rBGH/rBST does not have to be mentioned on milk cartons. He's the one who stopped any information about folic acid being good for expectant mothers to stop Spina Bifida (if you're 17 or under and suffer from Spina Bifida you have Mike Taylor to thank), and then some.... He was deputy of the FDA back in the 90's as well (when the milk went through) and claims that whenever Monsanto came up, he would stay out of the decision making (and I'm sure not one of his underlings had any reason to vote for the absent boss, right? And he didn't even have to be absent seeing how the conflict of interest laws only make sure he doesn't double deal in his first year in the public sector) And as they say (and excuse in the Daily Green-wash) "He also was a coauthor of the FDA’s 1992 policy statement on genetically engineered plant foods." The Daily tries to say that his time both at the FDA and later at USDA led to greater meat health and security. All vegan arguments aside-- do you really think that Meat has gotten safer over the past 15 years? Really?

The virtual Hearst rag ends proclaiming: "In 2007, he went to academia and joined the food policy think tank (see his bio) at George Washington University. There, he produced the excellent food safety report I mentioned in a previous post, which repeats these points. This is about as good a position on food safety as can be expected of any federal official. I wish him all the luck in the world in getting the safety of FDA-regulated foods under control. For those of you who are still dubious, how about giving him a chance to show what he can do? But do keep the pressure on - hold his feet to the fire - so he knows he has plenty of support for doing the right thing."

Yeah... give him a chance. come on.... and if you don't put more pressure on him than an $11Bn multinational corporation, well don't blame him, or us, or Obama.... you just weren't trying hard enough

....and if you get busted for growing organic food-- or for growing Monsanto's I.P. whose genes slipped into your seeds, well maybe you weren't giving Mike his props.

read more about mike here, and here.

Maudit Silicon!!!! Attend que'on l'pogne le p'tit câlisse

Quebecois silicon co from Timmins, owned by the Dutch, gets the duckets

What do you get if you cross Shania Twain and Celine Dion? I don't know, but I don't wanna hear it :P But I do know this: Celine is from Quebec, just like me, cirque du soleil, Poutine, the director of the Night at the Museum movies, William Shatner, and Monsieur Rene Boisvert. Who's that last guy? he's the CEO of Becancour Silicon, a company owned by Timminco, who of course, are based in Timmins (Canada's 69th largest city. no really i swear it's true). Timmins was famous for gold a hundred years ago, De Beers has a diamond mine there, and due to a hundred years + of underground mines, they're also famous for huge sudden sink holes. And yes, Cowboy Junkies and Shania are both from there (though neither the twain ever met).

"So what?" I hear you saying... and rightfully so. actually this isn't a huge story, so maybe the preamble wasn't worth it. But yesterday was a good day for Monsiuer Boisvert and Timminco, that's for sure. Investissement Quebec just loaned them $25M to ramp up their Solar Grade Silicon (SoG-Si) plant. Is it too late? As you know I was yelling and foaming at the mouth about the shortage of solar grade silicon, four years ago.... And the problem was that from 95-99 experts were warning of the coming shortage... but since at least '006 there have been so many SoG-Si plants coming online that there is almost a threat of a glut. Plus we have CIGs, NanoSolar, so many non-silicon solar mtals coming out, that you have to ask if there is even a need for any more SoG-Si plants (((and no one has yet used that Russian/NREL way to make SoG-si without chlorine and only 1/3 of the electricity))), at least that would make cheap SoG-Si which will never go out of style!

So is it just in time?? or way too late? I just wanna get me some Quebecois solar panels, hostie....