|Rusty petro pump|
a morgueFile free photo
To be truthful, I never thought I'd see the day, while there was any oil left, but the U.S. is guzzling less gas than it did four years ago. Five percent less, according to Lester R. Brown of the Earth Policy Institute.
Even better, in yesterday's news release, U.S. Gasoline Use Declining: Keystone XL Pipeline Not Needed, Dr. Brown cites four reasons we can expect to see U.S. gasoline use continue to slip. They are:
- We're buying fewer cars.
- We're driving fewer miles.
- We're demanding Congress mandate more fuel-efficient vehicles.
- We're demanding and buying more electric cars.
We Americans have a long way to go before we are doing our fair share to curb emissions, conserve energy, slow other petro-chemical pollution, and just possibly save the planet for future generations.
Still, I'm heartened by this news. And there's a bonus. Dr. Brown believes we can expect further declines as more and more of the populace move to cities, where public transportation is readily available.
Teenagers, for example, no longer need shiny, new pickups--or old farm trucks for that matter--to socialize. Dr. Brown says,
On top of urbanization, we also have a change in the manner in which young people socialize. For teenagers in rural communities a half century ago, getting a driver’s license and something to drive—a car, a pickup, or even a farm truck—was a rite of passage. That’s what everyone did.I call that cause for celebration. Homemade ice cream anyone?
This too is changing. Today’s teenagers, most of whom grew up in an urban setting, socialize through smartphones and the Internet. For many of them, a car is of little interest. The number of licensed teenage drivers in this country—the car owners of the future—has dropped from a peak of 12 million in 1978 to 10 million today.
We make peace in a million small ways every day.
All text and images, unless otherwise noted, © L. Kathryn Grace. All rights reserved.