Hello from Santa Monica!

So, we touched the Pacific Ocean this morning at Santa Monica Pier, took some pictures and decided it wasn’t very useful to compare the current weather here with the current weather in Pittsburgh. Life is too short and Cindy and I are both in very positive moods just now.

And the well grounded optimism gained momentum with our visit to the terrific Lincoln Middle School. Three hundred sixth graders cheering wildly in support of the little game show Cindy cooked up to teach kids about natural gas and natural gas vehicles. Everyone had noise makers, went nuts helping the three contestants vote on the answers to questions we posed (three hundred lifelines) and we really want to believe that some learning occurred. The reason we think that is based on their amazing and insightful questions. We covered it all; technical stuff, environmental stuff, policy stuff. Everything… including the impact that natural gas fuel has on horsepower; a concern from one budding hot rodder. Not surprising; this is California, for Pete’s sake and cars rule! 

Some people think our kids aren’t up to the challenges we face today. We don’t agree and you wouldn’t either seeing these Lincoln kids; they are going to leave us in the dust. If it was up to them, we’d already be energy independent… in a safe and responsible manner of course. 

We were hoping some people would be inspired today. It worked. Thanks Lincoln for helping us soar.



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3 responses to “Hello from Santa Monica!

  1. Mark Hunsberger

    Enjoy the Trip! Will you be posting your cost of fuel along your route? It would be great to compare CNG to the cost of gasoline at those same stops. Most people will be quite surprised to see how large your savings will be; especially in places like Oklahoma City! Your choice of a Hummer will beautifully demonstrate that the cost of fuel has a much greater impact on our wallets, than miles per gallon!
    Go Nat Gas! Natural Security via Natural Gas = Natural Security.

    • Actually we won’t be posting the costs along the way, but we are estimating that the cross country trip will use about $400 of fuel; natural gas fuel.
      The gasoline trip would be about $1100. Big difference.
      Also, the fuel costs are somewhat complicated by how the “gallon equivalents” are measured. For example, although the fuel cost in CA is about $2.65 per gallon; the amount of driving we can do on that “gallon” is equal to about two gallons of gasoline. The way we try to normalize the equivalency is on a BTU basis. On that basis, and given the mileage we are getting on the Hummer, the cost in CA for fuel was more like $1.40/ gasoline gallon equivalent. I think this kind of thing needs to be worked out over time so that people know exactly how much they are saving. In CA, I think the savings are vastly understated.

      • Murry – Intrigued with your trip and would love to meet up with you in Tulsa. I’ve been saving lots of bucks driving a Honda Civic GX since 2009.

        Would love to see more details about your Hummer conversion to CNG. Also, I don’t follow your comments regarding CNG gge’s not being equivalent to a gasoline gallon – maybe can chat about that in Tulsa!

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