Boston Legal is an ABC TV series about a law firm. In the episode Green Christmas (first aired Dec. 18, 2007), the law firm, Crane Poole and Schmidt, is sued by a group called "Green People" for fraud because they said they were green but actually were not. In the court case, a board member of Green People is asked which car he drives? He says a hybrid, to which the Boston Legal firm's lawyer Katie responds saying a Hummer is greener because of the way batteries are made. On top of that, she says hybrids reduce the cost of driving which encourages more driving and in the end more pollution. You can watch the video above. Here's exactly what Katie says:
Hybrid batteries contain nickel that is mined and smelted in a plant in Sudbury, Ontario. A plant that has caused so much environmental damage and acid rain that NASA uses the so-called dead zone around the plant to test its moon rovers. ... That nickel then has to be shipped via massive containers to a refinery in Europe. Then off to China to be made into nickel foam, then to Japan to be manufactured, then finally all the way back to America. All that, just to put a single hybrid battery into a car. When you combine all the energy it takes to built and drive a hybrid it adds up to almost fifty percent more that it does to build and drive a Hummer.
A few comments to my posts on the hybrid in the Knight Rider TV movie, said things like like "spare me." Yes, the Knight Rider TV movie is a remake of a cheesy '80s TV show, but it might inspire Ford to make a hybrid Mustang. Boston Legal's 10 million viewers probably believed the statements about hybrid batteries. My point is: Culture matters. It's probably more important than things like politics, technology, brand or anything. It really does not matter that the hybrid Hummer/Prius study has been discredited (many, many times) or that this argument is just stupid for the simple reason that batteries are recycled by law. If it's repeated on shows like Boston Legal, it's "fact."