Wednesday, December 9, 2009


The "Where You At?" series continues (only 5 more questions to address):
23. How much gasoline do you use a week, on the average?

As a Prius owner, I can smugly answer that my car needs re-fueling every two weeks after about 500 miles of travel (how this accumulates mostly within 20 miles of my house, is amazing to me!), at an average of 50 miles per gallon. So, every week I burn through about five gallons of gas.

But, if we were all to answer this question completely and honestly, the sum would be considerably greater because of other goods and services we enjoy that require some kind of transportation in order for us to receive them. Groceries, for example, rarely come from nearby. Perhaps we should add a portion of the fuel that cargo transportation uses to get us strawberries from New Zealand, chocolate from Brazil and coffee from Ecuador, as well as the maple syrup I absolutely NEED all the way from Vermont! The postal service requires quite a bit of fuel to achieve its miracles. And I should really calculate the amount of fuel that comprises my portion of the airline flight I just took to Portland, Oregon and back.

Being a bleeding heart liberal environmentalist, the related questions that I like to think about is: "How do you minimize the use of gasoline in your lifestyle? What could you do to decrease that use even more?"

Here's a few things we already do:
Walk Orion to and from school every day;
E-mail Christmas cards/letters (But this is not nearly as much fun to receive!);
Bike to the grocery store for small purchases;
Keep most recreational outings within twenty miles from home;
Mostly engage in non-motorized recreation;
Drive a Prius!

What else could we do as a family?
Get Brooke to carpool, walk or ride her bike the 1 mile to school;
Bike to the grocery store with burley for larger grocery purchases;
Ban air travel from our lives?

Not sure here. I feel that our government and industries need to get on the ball and produce vehicles that use less fuel. The technology is available. The new "35 mpg" standard is pathetic. This is also about air quality, not just fuel conservation.
But I rant. Time to go for a walk!

1 comment:

Jackijo said...

I try to buy my food as locally as possible. But do I ban bananas and chocolate? No, at least not for now. I try to carpool and I am taking public transportation whenever I go downtown.