As The Other Sarah mentioned a couple of days ago, the Wall Street Journal ran a story about a time in the oh-so-near future when there will be a billion cars on the road. The article fronted an Automotive section with a variety of eco-themed articles. And since you can’t read any of them online without a subscription, I thought I’d give a rundown of what the eminent WSJ has to say about all this car stuff. And I’ll provide you with links to the stories anyway, so subscribers have easy access to what they’ve already read, and non-subscribers can grind their teeth in frustration at being excluded from the elite club. That’s the kind of service we provide here at the Wheel Deal.

The Other Alternative is an article on biodiesel, with nothing new to Gristmill readers. Soybeans, corn, and switchgrass, oh my! Sound byte: “[P]roponents of biofuels say they are an idea whose time has finally arrived — and the push isn’t just coming from environmentalists.” If the push is coming from environmentalists at all — if you read this enviro-blog, you see a lot of hatin’ on biofuels.

The Big Chill talks about Americans turning back to smaller cars and how auto companies are making adjustments to have sweet rides available in the small-car market. Keep an eye out for the Ford Reflex, Honda Fit, Nissan Versa, Toyota Yaris, and Dodge Caliber.

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Easing the Logjam gives suggestions for improving traffic congestion in ways other than by building more roads. Imagine! These include removing accidents more quickly to reduce rubbernecking, installing adaptive traffic signals, allowing solo drivers to use the carpool lane for a toll, creating incentives for public transit, and alerting drivers to congestion through message signs.

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Cars and Politics brings the shocking news that blue states prefer hybrids, while red states prefer SUVs.

Take It Back talks about the European Union policy to be instituted at the end of the year for auto makers to take back and recycle cars that have reached life’s end, while Developing Problem reports that the number of cars in India has tripled since 1991, and the country is rushing to provide traffic infrastructure.

Dealer Calls is an interview with an auto dealership CEO who supports high gas taxes to reduce America’s energy dependence. Visions of the Future tries to see into the future of the car: from the electric to the three-wheeled to the — is it possible? — flying versions.

A good roundup, all in all. Each article is accessible for only $4.95 — but perhaps you’re saving that for gas?

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