November 16, 2010

ALAN BOYLE: Where do I plug in my Nissan Leaf?

UPDATE: Bill Dyer emails: “I’m surprised that with your link to Alan Boyle’s article on msnbc.com about his test-drive of a Nissan Leaf, you didn’t comment on his obliviousness to the fact that he was stealing electricity from a nearby parking garage that had a convenient electric plug.” Hmm. Well, “stealing” is strong — we’re talking about a public outlet in a public place — though hooking up a laptop that draws, say, 65 watts or a trouble light that draws 100 is a whole different proposition from hooking up a car that draws kilowatts.

ANOTHER UPDATE: A surprising number (well, a couple, but that’s surprising to me) say that it’s stealing regardless. I don’t see it. It’s all about scope of consent. Put up a water fountain and you’re consenting to have people drink from it, but not to run a hose to water their garden across the street. Same principle here. At any rate, if there are lots of plug-in vehicles out there, these outlets will either disappear, be locked, or be metered to deliver no more than a trickle.

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