Last night, I saw “Back to the Future” for the first time in many a year. And I had to smile at the end. In 1985, it was still credible that we’d have flying cars in 2015. The shocking thing is that that leaves us only four years now. Well, at least it doesn’t take laying down much infrastructure, so I suppose it is conceivable (especially if we’re fueled by a Mr. Fusion).
But today, I saw something that is more likely to be our future — a plug-in electric car. In routine use.
I was visiting Mike Couick over at the Electric Cooperatives of South Carolina in Cayce. As it happens, we were talking about sustainable energy (ADCO is working with the Central Midlands Council of Governments and a couple of private partners on a project for local governments). And when we walked outside after the interview, there was some right in front of us.
This Nissan Leaf belongs to ECSC, and is used to drive around the state on co-op business, which surprised me — I assumed it was for local use. How does it manage that sort of range? Mike said all the co-ops have charging stations.
Very cool, I thought.
Mike reminded me that this was really sort of retro, since the original automobiles were electric, before the internal combustion engine decided to eat the world (my wording, not his).
With that in mind, I can’t wait to get back to the future and drive one of these myself. And I’ll pass on the gullwing doors, Mr. DeLorean.
— Brad Warthen
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