Monday, April 11, 2005

Stop supporting terrorism. Do it.

So, we need to lessen our oil dependency. What if, instead of the innocuous "miles to the gallon" rating that no one seems to take seriously (based on the fact that Hummers continue to sell), we rated vehicles by "miles to the dollar"? With gas so high right now maybe it would impact people a little more.

I bought a Honda Civic HX because the Hybrid was too expensive. Its claimed mileage is 36/44. (While I've been getting 35-36 in traffic, I've still never seen over 41 on the highway.) Anyway, on my last tank I paid $2.259 per gallon for 9.7 gallons of gas, $21.91, that I just drove 344 miles (about 35.5 miles to the gallon).

That's 15.7 miles to the dollar. A 2005 Ford Mustang GT gets 17 miles to the gallon right now; that's 7.5 miles to the dollar. Every 7.5 miles you go is another dollar. In your 2005 Ford Expedition, you're getting a sweet 5.7 miles to the dollar. Good work, you.

Honda, I'll give you this idea for your next ad campaign in exchange for some protein bars.


At 10:10 AM, Blogger J. Morgan Caler said...

I have become more and more convinced that fuel efficiency is a debate of distraction that oil companies, auto manufacturers, and Republicans are happy to keep alive. Actually, oil dependency is a distraction all together, but it is still getting at rampant consumption of natural resources. Nonetheless, I think it is a distraction. While I commend Charles for his 15.9 miles/dollar and am ashamed of my Explorer’s 7.9 miles/dollar, it makes not one whit of difference in terms of consumption, dependence, or conservation. The issue is not consumption of fuel directly, but consumption of transportation, in this case, miles traveled in a personal vehicle. With that in mind, I would estimate that Charles drives, on average, 200 miles/week. I, on the other hand, drive more like 40 miles/week with a monthly 100+ mile trip. Conservatively, then, over the course of a year, Charles consumes 10,400 miles (probably more like 15-18k), while I consume 3280 miles (probably more like 4-6k). With our differences in efficiency in mind, Charles still gives over $200 more to ExxonMobileSaudiBPTexacoBinLaden, Inc. than I do. So rather than complaining about Hummer sales, I think we should start complaining about the construction of new roads, the lack of crippling taxes on private vehicles in urban and suburban areas, and the lack of extensive public transportation. Fuel efficiency is a distraction, consumption of transportation is the issue. Once we start getting people out of cars and onto trains/buses/bikes, then we can start worrying about fuel efficiency for obsolete aircraft, the military, the trucking industry, etc. When we get to that point, hybrid consumer autos, fuel cell technology, and miles/dollar starts to be an issue.

Howard Dean, I will give you this idea for your next political campaign in exchange for a gray tie.

At 2:35 PM, Blogger CharlesPeirce said...

J. Morgan, you're so wrong. I drive at least that many miles each week, and with my crazy weekend trips it adds up to way more!

In all seriousness, I agree--the point is not to "cut down on" oil consumption, but to revamp our lives to cut down on resource consumption. How should we do this? If WMATA builds the Metro station out to Dulles airport I'll take it to work every day. Is that what you're talking about, or something even more radical?

And I'll continue to complain about Hummer sales, unless you'd rather I drive a Hummer or a Civic my 250 miles a week.


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