Chevrolet VoltWilliam Morrison of Des Moines is credited with building the first electric car in 1891. It was successful, except for two problems: the batteries were heavy and expensive, and it wouldn't go very far on a charge. In 2009 Ford and General Motors showed their new line of electric cars at the Detroit Auto Show. They were as pretty as you can make a vehicle. But they have two major problems: the batteries are heavy and expensive, and they don't go very far on a charge.

Super coldDon't pay any attention to your frozen thermometer. Never mind that your city is shivering under a record-setting cold wave, paralyzed by another record-setting snowfall. Do not think twice about your mounting heating bill, electricity blackouts, or reports that heating oil deliveries for your area are not available. Even if your teeth are chattering, concentrate only on one thing: global warming, Global Warming, GLOBAL WARMING. Just wrap yourself in a blanket and re-watch Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth. And remember, be very, very afraid ... of global warming.

James HansenJames Hansen, who runs NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), has struck again. The political activist/scientist, global-warming guru, and boon companion to Al Gore has written a letter to Barack and Michelle Obama, imploring the president-elect and his wife to "decarbonize" the economy by imposing a steadily increasing "carbon tax" on coal, oil, and gas.

solar-powered toiletWith great fanfare, the City of Portland, Oregon, inaugurated its first solar-powered "loo" in Old Town, on December 8. "At the unveiling, mayor-elect Sam Adams gave the fancy new toilet its first ceremonial flush and Commissioner Randy Leonard was awarded with an honorary golden plunger," reported Portland's KGW-TV.

Asthma sufferer - APBeginning January 1, 2009, millions of asthma sufferers will no longer legally be able to obtain the low-cost albuterol inhalers that enable them to breathe. The inhalers have been outlawed by FDA regulations under the UN Montreal Protocol on Ozone Deplation.