April 29-30th the 5th annual GoGreen Conference will be taking place in Seattle, and one of the featured displays will be some of the latest electric and hybrid vehicles.

One of the vehicle lines included will the fire-plagued, controversial Tesla line of cars.  The conference will be held at The Convention Center and will feature involvement from King County Executives, and in fact is sponsored by King County.   The EPA will be having an executive session as well.

But we found it interesting that Tesla will be a featured vehicle line.  For the last few years, Tesla has been besieged by technical and safety issues.  Despite millions of dollars in government subsidies, Tesla hasn't been able to fully provide what was supposed to be a complete line of luxury and even sport vehicles powered by electricity.  While they appear to have remedied some of the earlier issues, which included the car dying during a test drive by a leading auto magazine, there's still problems.

One of the issues faced by some of their models are the possibility of catching fire, even while parked.  One of their new S models (which will be featured at the GoGreen Conference) burst into flames in Toronto back in January.  The company in January issued a recall for 29,000 of it's charging adapters for the 2013 model S because of a fire hazard.

CNN reported in March that Tesla was installing underneath titanium fire shields on the S model to prevent further risk from possible fires.

Another issue, and one that even the EPA tackled in 2013, is that the excessive amounts of nickel and cobalt (lithium-ion batteries)  have a high potential for negative health and environmental impacts.  7-8 years ago, when Dr. Dean Edell still had his syndicated radio health show (heard on Newstalk 870) he warned of the potential health hazards from such massive batteries needed to power cars.   He said nickel mining and production is one of the most toxic processes on earth,  and causes significant environmental damage.

  USA Today also questioned the price of these vehicles, which starts with an MSRP of $69,900.   The news outlet and others also questioned what they say is inflated stock value of the company, which has seen it's value on Wall St. rise rapidly in the last few months.

So if you want to see one, and even have a chance to test drive the Tesla Model S, venture to the Seattle GoGreen Conference.  But you might want to bring your firesuit - just in case.


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