Thousands of automotive engineers will meet in Detroit this week as the SAE World Congress opens. The show's theme is "Engineering for Global Sustainable Mobility -- It's Up to Us." No doubt there is more pressure than ever on engineering teams to improve fuel economy and reduce greenhouse gases. President Bush has made clear his goals on reducing gas consumption and foreign oil dependence, and every politician in the news is proposing some type of restriction or tax on cars and trucks. Studying the possibilities and setting a direction will be a priority for all automakers. The engineers know they can do it.

"The same engineers that lowered emissions for photochemical smog by 99 percent and lowered traffic fatalities by 75 percent over the last 30 years, have more than doubled fuel efficiency. Engineers are amazing animals. Give them a problem and define what you'd like to have done, and they deliver," praised Richard Schaum, SAE president for 2007.

While I love to read and write about automotive technology, it will not be the savior the world needs to correct global warming or reduce oil consumption. I still believe human behavior can do more. Unfortunately, there isn't a World Congress for that topic but maybe Earth Day is good substitute.

[Source: David Shepardson / Detroit News]

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