President Bush in Missouri today: “Let me just put it bluntly: We’re too dependent on oil. [...] And see, low gasoline prices may mask that concern.  So, first, I want to tell you that I welcome the low gasoline prices, however it’s not going to dim my enthusiasm for making sure we diversify away from oil. [...] this country has got to use its talent and its wealth to get us off oil. And I believe we will do so, and I believe — I know the best way to do so is through technological breakthroughs.

“[...] we envision a day in which light and powerful batteries will become available in the marketplace so that you can drive the first 40 miles on electricity, on batteries, and your car won’t have to look like a golf cart….In other words, it will be a technology that will meet consumer demand and at the same time meet a national need, which is less consumption of gasoline. These are called plug-in hybrid vehicles. [...]Most folks in the cities don’t drive more than 40 miles, so you can envision consumer habits beginning to change: You drive to work; you go home; you plug in your automobile. And you go — ride to work and go home the next — and you’re still on electricity. It’s going to change the consumption patterns. This new technology will change the consumption patterns on gasoline, which in turn will make us less dependent on crude oil, which meets a national security concern, an economic security concern, and helps us deal with an environmental concern.”

Only 2% of US electricity is generated from oil today – later in his speech the President noted this by saying, “I don’t know if you know this or not, but electricity is generated from natural gas, about 18 percent; coal, 50 percent; nuclear power, 20 percent; and then — solar and wind. “

He also emphasized the ease of manufacturing flex-fuel vehicles: “it doesn’t require much money to convert a regular gasoline-driven car to a flex-fuel automobile. See, the technology is available. It takes about $100-something to change a gasoline-only automobile to one that can use E85. And it works.

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