Most of us know by now that in order to lessen our Carbon footprint we need to do something about the way we drive. Whether this is driving a hybrid, using cleaner fuel sources or not driving at all, understandably, making certain changes is simply not an option for many of us. For example, if you can't afford to buy a new car, obviously, you are not in the market to buy a hybrid. If you live thirty miles from your place of work and public transportation isn't available, you can't just not drive, right?
Apparently, you are not alone if you have no choice but to drive to work. But do you have to be alone? In other words, if you must drive to work, then why not try carpooling? Take, for instance, all the carpooling going on in the State of Washington, where the Clean Air Act gives businesses who encourage and facilitate carpooling, taking buses, walking to work etc., a tax credit. The program has been so effective that roughly 20,000 fewer vehicle trips are taken on Washington roadways each morning, resulting in savings of $13.7 million and a reduction of 78,000 tons of greenhouse gases since the program started in 1991.
There's no denying that the tax credit has been an impetus in making the program a success in Washington (a clear example of how government and industry has a great responsibility in the green movement). But to heed that most wise of admonitions, "Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country", it truly is up to us to make a difference when government hasn't yet stepped up to the plate. Therefore, even if you can't get a tax credit, why not try making an attempt to start a carpooling program at your place of work. Even if you can get one person to carpool with you, that will make a huge difference. That's like cutting your driving in half!
Oh, and one more thing: Next time before you hit the roadways, do some standard maintenance checks like checking your tire pressure. Keeping your tires inflated at the recommended psi can improve your gas mileage by 3%, while a clean air filter can deliver 10% better fuel efficiency. A tune up will also help improve your gas mileage by 4%. Just like everything else, you will have to put up some money for that tune up, but you save even more money with 4% better gas mileage, not to mention the environment itself!