Who Killed the Electric Car? (2006) ALL
With gasoline prices approaching $4/gallon, fossil fuel shortages, unrest in oil producing regions around the globe and mainstream consumer adoption and adoption of the hybrid electric car (more than 140,000 Prius' sold this year), this story couldn't be more relevant or important. The foremost goal in making this movie is to educate and enlighten audiences with the story of this car, its place in history and in the larger story of our car culture and how it enables our continuing addiction to foreign oil. This is an important film with an important message that not only calls to task the officials who squelched the Zero Emission Vehicle mandate, but all of the other accomplices, government, the car companies, Big Oil, even Eco-darling Hydrogen as well as consumers, who turned their backs on the car and embrace embracing instead the SUV. Our documentary investigates the death and resurrection of the electric car, as well as the role of renewable energy and sustainable living in our country's future; issues which affect everyone from progressive liberals to the neo-conservative right.
As a result of their development of a solar powered vehicle for a competition, General Motors decided in the late 1980's to develop a fully functional and affordable electric powered car. The resulting vehicles were high powered, zero emission, but could only run for approximately 100 miles on a charge, which is sufficient for most day to day driving. Because they knew that the technology was feasible and because of the global warming phenomenon resulting from the uncontrolled burning of fossil fuels, California state regulators passed the Zero Emission Vehicle Mandate in 1990, requiring all auto makers to offer for sale in the state zero emission vehicles. The electric car was the most promising technology at the time. It was argued that they were more environmentally friendly than conventional vehicles, even if the electricity was produced through burning coal. Under pressure from all the auto makers who sued the California Air Resources Board, the mandate was revoked in 2003. Despite lessees who loved their electric vehicles, all the auto makers repossessed their electric vehicles and refused to re-lease or sell the vehicles even to their existing users. Many forces seemed to be working against making electric vehicles available, despite technology itself making their production and operation feasible.