Think about nature, when you drive

Driving a few days ago from Sedona to Phoenix, Arizona, I was often switching the gears of my Hyundai from “D” to “N”. That is, in other words, I was not speeding and jumping on the gas or on the breaks.

This made me think about the way Americans drive, and how much they can save by just driving economically (and that also means – ecologically correct)

Here is some data.

According to the official statistics, the number of highway vehicles in the US is about 245 million. If each of them saves a quarter of a gallon (or approx. 1 liter) of gas per day, that will be about $ 165 M per day, or nearly $ 5 B per month, or $ 60 Billion per year of saved money.

Now, I know that some of you will say, “But, Veni, I don’t drive my car every day!?”, and they will be right. But even more right will be the people who drive their cars all day long, or commute 2 hours in each direction, and spend huge time in traffic. Besides, the number above invludes also all trucks, buses, and “other 2-axle, 4-tire” vehicles. And some of them can save even more.

And it’s not only the savings frm the gas. There will be less gases delivered into the atmosphere. People will drive moderate (speeds of about 55 mph are more economic than 75 mph), and the result will be less accidents on the roads. The number of people saved from injrues or death is going to increase.

When people drive economically, and with the thoughts about Mother Nature, they will also be more relaxed, they will not get tired so quickly – fast driving, as we all know, makes people more tired, which leads to increased number of accidents.

I think it’s worth trying it. Here’s an example – a friend of mine in Bulgaria can drive approx. 60 miles with 1 gallon of diesel. Try achieving this in the US – even with the so-called economic – hybrid cars – that’s not achievable. And according to a recent article at the New York Times, the hybrid cars are not economic at all, if you drive them outside of the city. Quite the contrary – they spend more gas! Quite more.

The US society can make this effort. Actually any society can do it, but in the US that seems like a noble cause – with all the issues around the US position on the Kyoto Protocol. Hope the people here take this into their hands, and just do it.

Updated on May 4 (this was orginally published April 19, 2006):
I got this spam by e-mail. It probably originates from the gas companies?

NO GAS!!!…On May 15th, 2007
Don’t pump gas on May 15th
In April 1997, there was a ‘gas out’ conducted nationwide in protest of gas prices. Gasoline prices dropped 30 cents a gallon overnight.
On May 15th 2007, all internet users are to not go to a gas station in protest of high gas prices. Gas is now over $3.00 a gallon in most places.
There are 73,000,000+ American members currently on the internet network, and the average car takes about 30 to 50 dollars to fill up.
If all users did not go to the pump on the 15th, it would take
$2,292,000,000.00 (that’s almost 3 BILLION) out of the oil companys pockets for just one day, so please do not go to the gas station on May 15th and lets try to put a dent in the Middle Eastern oil industry for at least one day.
If you agree (which I cant see why you wouldn’t) resend this to all your contact list. With it saying, ” Don’t pump gas on May 15th’
Send this to at least 20 people to get results!!!

I say it’s probably written by the gas companies, because instead of asking drivers to drive economically, it just says, “Don’t pump gas on that day”. But the drivers will spend the same gas, as usual. And on the next day will put more gas in their tanks…

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2 Responses to Think about nature, when you drive

  1. Veni, the fact that we Europeans use less gas is due to the fact that we usually have manual gearboxes.
    With a manual gearbox and a good driver, you can save 20% vs an automatic gearbox.
    Our cars traditionally have smaller engines than the US ones. This also allows for a lower gas comsumption.

  2. Pingback: Cool Stories » Blog Archive » 81 miles with 1 gallon of gas

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