This is my email response to her
Melissa You are so right. The 2 miles per gallon gained on the 150,000 (Edmunds) vehicles is worth about 50 gallons of gasoline per year per vehicle. This equals 7.5 million gallons a year. The CO2 saved is 150 million pounds a year or 75,000 tons a year of saved CO2. To recycle and produce steel (most efficient from CO2 perspective) is about 2 tons of CO2 per ton of steel. The new cars have 1 ton of steel (minimum) so we have 300,000 tons of added CO2 just in recycling the steel. That equals four years worth of the saved emissions. Add the plastic, aluminum, chrome, rubber, paint, etc and we have 6 to 8 years. If the steel came from the average steel mill (mix of recycle and virgin) it would take 8 years to recover the CO2 just in the steel. If the steel came from a steel mill that uses virgin iron ore and coke it would take 12 years to recover the CO2 just in the steel. A far better program would have been to give each clunker owner free gasoline for 2 years if they used the clunkers to car pool to work with other clunker owners.
An update on stocks that I determined were hype. Raser (RZ) is down to a $1.11 I dinged them and their hype of the 100 mpg Hummer a few months back when they hyped their stock to $4.00 a share. Verenium (VRNM) has gone through a reverse stock split and is close to dying. I dinged them and their cellulosic ethanol six months back. A 123 Battery (AONE) that I dinged a couple of weeks back when they first went public has lost all of their initial gain. I predict they will be A down for the 10 count within three years. Just today Mark a very smart MBA asked me if we needed an ETF (electronically traded fund) of a basket of green companies. I responded that a basket of basket cases is basket squared. Folks don’t believe all that glitters is gold, true green will not lose its sheen.