For the Greater Goods

A lifestyle blog for the conscious consumer

Reducing Your Car’s Footprint

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In a perfect world we could teleport everywhere. No more buying gas and no more polluting the environment, but unfortunately this isn’t Star Trek and I’m not a mutant from X-men. The world isn’t perfect and at some point or another most of us need a car to get from A to B.

But seriously, is someone working on those teleporters? Because that invention is well overdue. I don’t need a slimmer iPhone, I need a teleporter.

Anyway, while teleportation devices are a work in progress, I have compiled some tips for being more eco-friendly while you’re driving. Although the idea may seem counter intuitive, there are many ways you can reduce your carbon footprint while driving. Here I have highlighted 4 different ways to drive more efficiently.

1. Remove excess weight. I’m definitely guilty of keeping everything but the kitchen sink in my car. This summer I had golf clubs, a yoga mat, towels, a sleeping bag, shoes, jackets, and I’m sure there’s more. I like to be prepared. But did you know that an extra 100 pounds in your vehicle could reduce your MPG by up to 2%? Granted that is based on the relative weight of your car, but let’s just say my clubs now sit nicely in my garage.

2. If you are traveling with a lot of luggage, tow it behind your car, not on top. Carrying cargo on your roof increases aerodynamic drag, which can lower fuel economy by up to 25% on the highway.

3. Use cruise control. My mom always made cruise control seem like this scary thing. Like if I used it I would suddenly forget I was driving or something. And obviously there are some circumstances where it doesn’t help, like maybe don’t use it in a busy city where you need to stop frequently. But on long stretches of highway it really helps you maintain your speed, which will use less fuel.

4. Lastly, car sharing could save up to 73,000,000 tons of CO2 emissions every year, if every household in the US participated. There are 2 ways car sharing can reduce CO2 emissions. The first way is from the production of cars. If we share cars, we need less cars and consequently, less cars being made is less energy being used to produce them. Secondly, let’s say you bought a large SUV so you have enough room to travel with your family, but when you’re not traveling, you have no need for the extra space or maybe even the car itself. So borrowing a car when you need it, rather than buying one for occasional use can reduce the number of cars on the road and their emissions. You can get a little more info below with this handy info-graphic made by a company called Turo.

Turo

Turo is a peer-to-peer car sharing service that allows private car-owners to rent out their vehicles through an online interface. You’re allowed to set your own prices and dictate when your car is available to rent. Basically, you make money by allowing someone to use your car when you’re not. And you might be thinking, “uh I don’t trust a stranger with my car”. Well have no fear. Relay Rides has a $1,000,000 liability policy for each rental, which covers any damage to or theft of your car.

Interested? Check below to see if Turo is active in your city. Happy driving!

2 thoughts on “Reducing Your Car’s Footprint

  1. Strategies regarding having less cars on the road and the value of supporting a healthy environment makes your post good one! Thanks for sharing.

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