What do you drive? and why?
I’ve just swapped my ’96 4-door Volvo 960 for a 2005 Toyota Corolla. Why would I give up a beautiful, luxury car like that for a Corolla, eh? Why would I give up that great stereo, sun roof, big roomy trunk, cruise control, automatic transmission, and more guts taking off from the red light than many vehicles that land in the lane beside me!?
Because as sweet as it was to sit in that driver’s seat, and be soundly protected in a collision – I was rear-ended once BY A COROLLA! the Corolla driver claimed his vehicle suffered damage; I barely felt the collision seated in my heated, luxury leather seats; that was the day I realized how *safe* my Volvo was compared to many other vehicles- but I digress, or maybe I’m right on topic? So if I felt so *safe*, and it was such a sweet ride, why on earth would I give it up?
…because when I drove the Volvo I felt like a gas-pig. Instead of feeling sweet, and maybe even a bit privileged, I felt guilty and hypocritical. I felt I was betraying my essential self. That self that had ridden a bicycle for most of its life on this planet. That self that really doesn’t want any more oil and gas pipelines, and doesn’t really want to see any more oil tankers in the Salish Sea.
Freakishly, the cost of filling the tank had nearly doubled in the 6 years I’d been driving it; and it was now costing $100.00, give or take a few dollars – depending on the price at the pumps that week – to fill the tank. If I wanted to do more than the basic necessities with my car, I always had to consider the cost of gas to drive it to wherever. That always made me think of the environmental impact of that car. Did I really need it?
Meanwhile I had a friend driving a Toyota Corolla that seemed to run double the kilometers for half the price. Then one day he bought something new, said he was selling the Toyota. I grabbed it, and gave up the Volvo.
Where I live on Vancouver Island, Canada, that makes me a tiny little tin can driving beside what feel like monster-sized pick up trucks that could probably drive right over top of me.
Then this morning I read this about SUV’s, the current vehicle of preference for most automobile buyers:
“The increase in global emissions from SUVs “cancel out the gains” made by electric vehicles, five-fold, he added.” (Apostolos Petropoulos, an energy modeller at the IEA.)
What kind of vehicle do you drive? and why?
Do you really need to leave that big a carbon footprint for your grandchildren? Could you manage with a smaller vehicle? Or if you really need the truck or SUV sometimes, could you get some little run around for driving in town? or maybe use a bicycle? or how about walking? I like walking. My mother lived to be 87 even tho she smoked her whole life. She was a walker. Walked every day of her life. Said the day she could no longer walk was the day she would die. They say walking everyday does add years to your life.
Maybe walking when you don’t need the car is the best thing, eh? Just keep your eyes open for those SUV’s.
“An investigation last year by The Detroit Free Press and USA Today found that SUVs were a leading cause of the skyrocketing numbers of pedestrian deaths in the U.S., which increased 46 per cent between 2009 and 2018. “
I definitely need to walk more. I like to walk, but rarely take the time to walk just to be walking. Where I live I would have to drive somewhere to go on a hike, otherwise I can walk around the neighborhood and the shopping center across the street from me.
Currently I own a Chrysler Town and Country van. I’ve always owned a van since the 70s and that’s my preferred ride. My van now is hands down the best one I’ve owned so far.
Tossing It Out