The latest lemon to roll off the assembly line at the CEI factoid factory and onto the track at Planet Gore is the assertion that cars beat high speed trains as low emission transport. Relying on Brit blogger Guido Fawkes interpretation of a set of power point slides reminiscent of those used to snow viewers of Al Gore's road show, CEI refers us to a 2004 study, un-peer reviewed, of course, by the Institution Of Mechanical Engineers.
It makes the sound point that a full car can compete on per passenger fuel efficiency and CO2 emission with a half empty electric train, if the train is driven by fossil fuel fired electricity. But the IME study makes some rather odd graphic assumptions. Though it reasonably choses the 5 passenger VW Passat as its representative car, it bases all of its worst -case analysis on the five passenger vehicle being 25% full.
Given the Labour Party's ascendancy, Britain is full these days of anti smoking activists, hunt saboteurs, and other villains deserving of being drawn and quartered. Yet one seldom sees a quarter of a felon occupying the passenger seat of a passing car on the M25. This is bad news for Planet Gore, as with just an intact driver aboard, even a Prius loses out to the IME model's half empty train.
To be fair, the study points to example of the French TGV train, which draws 90% of its juice from the nuclear grid as it flashes by the green and guillotine-free countryside. Having earlier pointed out the superiority of gin-fueled pedestrians as Green Transport Paradigm, Adamant will happily research the Green prospects of a red wine propelled Paris-Dijon line ,if readers will underwrite the necessary selections from the dining car's Carte des Grand Crus du Cote D'or.