Travel has undergone a revolution over the last several years as people strive to reduce the damage they are doing to the environment in the form of harmful carbon emissions that are polluting our air and contributing to global warming. The government has embraced the concept of alternative fuel, offering incentives on both federal and local levels to companies and individuals willing to experiment with a different type of vehicle. And people everywhere are going green in a broad spectrum of areas, including transportation. However, there are still a large number of people who seem to have no idea that a change is taking place in the auto industry. Or perhaps they just think it’s too much work to switch. But nothing could be further from the truth. There are plenty of ways to get from point A to point B with less (or no) pollution.
To start with, there are quite a few options when it comes to green vehicles. For most people, the thought of giving up a car, which has become synonymous with the both freedom and status, is abhorrent. To that end, many car companies have begun experimenting with alternate-fuel vehicles. Hybrid and electric cars (which utilize batteries) are now widely available and sometimes come with incentives like tax breaks or carpool exemption. Biodiesel is, as the name suggests, a fuel made from biomass (or biological material like soybean, canola oil, animal fat, or even recycled cooking oil). B20 (20 biomass, 80% diesel) can be used in current diesel engines, and although testing is ongoing, some cities have adopted it for mass transit like buses. Hydrogen, although not yet commercially available, looks to be an excellent alternative fuel in the future as it can be made with electricity and if a green energy source like solar or wind power is used, it is almost entirely emission-free. Methanol (M85, which is 85% methanol and 15% unleaded) is a flex-fuel which requires only slight tweaking to automobile engines and current gas pumps to implement on a large scale. And finally, there is ethanol, which is created by fermenting biomass (generally corn) which in itself produces no greenhouse gases (although E85 is still 15% gasoline). The nice thing is that as more people purchase these vehicles, the price of production goes down, a savings that gets passed on to customers, and more fueling stations appear across the country. And of course, one of the best ways to cut down pollution and still use your car is to carpool.
For those who are willing to take their commitment to eco-friendly transportation a step further, there are even better options. For starters, walking is a great way to get around locally. Not only do you get your exercise while you go to the grocery store or coffee shop, you are supporting local businesses and you are likely to find some neat spots that you never would have noticed while zipping by in your automobile. Same deal for bike-riding, which may be a better alternative for getting to places that are more than a mile or so away (purely for reasons of expediency). And if you really do need a vehicle, look into something small like a scooter or a smart car, which use far less fuel than larger vehicles and are super easy to park!
Kyle Simpson writes for a trucking company called Trucker to Trucker. The company is making a considerable effort to go green. You can visit their website to find trucks for sale and you can even sell trucks.