Fewer Cars Would Be Better For Environment Than Greener Cars

OpEd by Tom Horton.

Published: 07-Mar-2003

id=text>IF YOU BELIEVE that what's good for General Motors is good for America, then you'll probably believe what Larry Burns, GM's vice president for research and development told The Wall Street Journal recently.

Speaking about development of a pollution-free automobile, fueled by hydrogen, that emits only water vapor from the exhaust, Burns said: "We think we can build a compelling and affordable car by 2010. It's a big challenge, but as a technologist, you have to be optimistic."

Where was GM's can-do spirit when it equated installing seat belts with the ruin of the auto industry, and later on, cried wolf over catalytic converters and air bags?

And where was the technological optimism last year when GM and other automakers successfully lobbied Congress to hold off requirements that they improve overall vehicle mileage, which has slipped below what it was 15 years ago?

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