There are many ways to cut your contribution to carbon pollution through informed transportation decisions you make today, tomorrow, next week, and long term. Here are but a few ideas, many easy and inexpensive, others more long term and with a higher financial commitment.
Keep in mind that our communities have implemented Climate Action Plans that outline goals of a certain amount of reduction per year in carbon pollution. The tips below can be adopted individually to then have community-wide results.
We hope to hear more of your ideas as comments:
- Slow Down: Drive 10 mph slower on the highway can save 12% or more on fuel consumption.
- Accelerate and decelerate more slowly: Avoid that great sucking sound of gas guzzling.
- Take the bus or rapid transit if that is possible where you live. You can save time and money and avoid the stress of driving in congestion--and cut your CO2 at the same time!
- Switch 1 Day's Commute: If you can't do it every day, try switching one day a week to commuting to work by bus, bicycle, carpool or walking. That's a 20% reduction in your commute miles each week!
- Consolidate Errands: take some time to figure out a route and errand schedule that consolidates your trips to the store.
- Car Free Sundays: try creating a car free day in your household. This would be a dedicated day when mobility is accomplished on bike, public transit or by walking.
- Carpool--with three people in the car you've cut your CO2 by 2/3!
- Go for a higher fuel economy car: next time you're in the market for an automobile, do your research to find what is the optimal car for your needs that has the highest possible fuel economy.
- Switch to a plug-in hybrid or all-electric car--a technology that can drastically improve your fuel economy. Even better, install solar panels to power your electric car. This will reduce your carbon footprint by nearly 80%, even counting the manufacture of the car, the batteries, and the solar panels! (and it only costs 3 cents per mile to run on electricity,so you can save money here as well)
- Inflate your tires to the proper level
- Try bicycling more often
- Walk More
- Housing, Schools & Work: Longer term, when making big decisions about your life and the needs of your family, consider distance to school, work and services.
And of course, you can join us at 350 Bay Area in supporting legislation that will encourage high density transit oriented development, bike paths, transit funding, pedestrian improvements, subsidies for electric cars, subsidies for solar and wind power and other clean energy, and active efforts to stop fracking and tar sands oil, support divestment, and implement a Bay Area Climate Action Plan to drastically cut carbon pollution. 100% renewable is 100% doable!