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Andrew T. Gillies is Director of Communications at the Center for Audit Quality, an affiliate of the American Institute of CPAs, in Washington, DC. Based in Washington since 2002, he has also worked in editorial and communications roles at the Investment Company Institute, the World Bank, Forbes, and Vault.com. His policy-themed writing has focused on aerospace and defense, energy and environment, transportation, and financial services.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Hybrid Trucks Drive Through The 'Valley of Death'

As we noted recently, use of hybrid engine technology in commercial trucks remains very much in its infancy. Expect that infancy to last a while, even with diesel prices soaring. A hybrid big rig costs 50% more than a conventional one, too rich a premium for most consumers. The federal government, while interested in promoting more efficient trucks, isn't a likely savior here.

All this was up for discussion at a Tuesday Capitol Hill hearing, held by the House Committee on Science and Technology's Subcommittee on Energy and the Environment. "The truck industry is due for a major technological shift, said Rep. Nick Lampson (D-Texas), the subcommittee's chair, "but advances in this sector don't come easily."

Full story at Forbes.com