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Toyota vows to release zero-emissions ‘car of the future’ in 2015

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Toyota said Monday it plans to launch a fuel-cell car in the United States next year, declaring the hydrogen vehicle with zero emissions “the car of the future.”

Toyota Motor Sales vice president Bob Carter said the initial market will be California, together with an initiative to establish hydrogen refueling stations in key regions of the state.

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“In 2015, we will bring this car to market,” Carter said in the announcement at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

The vehicle, yet to be named, would be a “zero-emission, electric-drive, mid-size, four-door sedan.”

“Functionally, this is a regular car,” he added.

The streamlined design is to maximize oxygen intake for the fuel-cell process. It will be able to travel 300 miles (480 kilometers) on a single fueling, which would take three to five minutes.

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While carmakers have long touted the advantages of fuel cells, high production costs and a lack of fuel stations have held back the technology.

Carter said however that Toyota had been getting results from its major investments and added that “we believe we can bring it in at a very reasonable price for a lot of people.”

Government initiatives in California were making progress in getting hydrogen fueling stations in needed areas, he added.

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“The issue of infrastructure is not so much about how many, but rather location, location, location,” he said.

“Fuel cells will be in our future sooner than many people believe… and in much greater numbers than anyone expected.”

Toyota unveiled a prototype last year at the Tokyo auto show, but on Monday offered more details for its plans for the US market.

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Honda is also expected to roll out a fuel-cell car in the US market in 2015, and other automakers are working on the technology, which emits only water vapor as exhaust.

Honda already has a fuel-cell car, the FCX Clarity, available on a small scale in a limited number of markets.

Carter said that Toyota and California officials plan to add 20 new fuel stations by 2015 to the 10 existing ones. The goal is to have about 100 in the state, and to have a station within a six-minute drive of an owner’s home or business.

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“This infrastructure thing is going to happen,” he said.

“I believe this vehicle will be the car of the future.”

It is expected to launch in Japan at about the same time.

[Image via Agence France-Presse]

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‘Stand with Hong Kong’ shirts fill the stands at Nets game as NBA is protested for China subservience

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The National Basketball Association was protested on Friday for bowing to pressure from China.

The NBA has been harshly criticized for standing by the oppressive regime instead of standing in solidarity with the pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong.

"Producer and activist Andrew Duncan bought 300 tickets to tonight's Nets vs Raptors game and is hosting hundreds of Chinese pro-Democracy activists to protest the NBA," New York magazine correspondent Yashar Ali reported Friday. "They're all wearing 'Stand With Hong Kong' T-shirts."

Photos from the protest:

1. Producer and activist Andrew Duncan bought 300 tickets to tonight's Nets vs Raptors game and is hosting hundreds of Chinese pro-Democracy activists to protest the NBA.

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Trump polling close friends over whether he should fire Mulvaney: report

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President Donald Trump is considering firing Mick Mulvaney, his acting White House chief of staff and director of the Office of Management and Budget, The Atlantic reported Friday.

"Mick Mulvaney's job was in danger even before his disastrous press conference yesterday, and his equally disastrous attempt to walk that performance back," The Atlantic reported. "The fumble could not have been more poorly timed: According to multiple current and former White House officials, many of whom spoke on the condition of anonymity to relay private conversations, Trump has been steadily souring on Mulvaney for weeks."

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Michael Moore predicts Mick Mulvaney will get into Heaven after confessing Trump’s quid pro quo

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Academy Award-winning filmmaker Michael Moore predicted acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney will ascend to Heaven in the afterlife during a Friday interview on MSNBC's "The Beat" with Ari Melber.

The host played a clip of Mulvaney admitting Trump's quid pro quo while seeking foreign election assistance from Ukraine.

"This man obviously is going to be admitted into Heaven," Moore said. "You know, he told the truth."

"If there was a movie version of this, somebody stuck him with a needle just before he walked out onto the stage there, a truth serum needle, and he just went on and on saying, 'Yeah, that’s what we do. Yeah, of course.' Essentially admitting there is a quid pro quo. In fact, there are many quid pro quos."

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