The Oil Drum: New York City

Helping New Yorkers understand, prepare and adapt to the implications of Peak Oil

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Fuel Economy Standards

Transporation is by far the largest consumer of oil and one of the reasons that we have not been able to reduce our demand for oil is the lack of progress in building more fuel efficient cars.

The EPA recently released statistics on the average fuel economy of different types of vehicles. As you can see, there was a lot of progress made in the late 1970s and early 1980s in getting more miles to the gallon for both trucks and cars. And the greater proportion of vehicles then were cars instead of trucks. Then the government allowed the auto industry to classify the SUVs as light trucks and in the 1990s, there was not only a leveling off of fuel economy for each vehicle type, but also the mix of trucks as a proportion of all vehicles increased dramatically.

And now even the hybrids are getting in on the boom in light trucks and higher performance (less efficient) cars as we read from this NY Times Article. We should squander hybrid technology to continue to produce large inefficient vehicles that are primarily used for single occupant transportation.

What can NYC do about this?
  1. Making the taxi fleet more fuel efficient by accelerating the introduction of hybrids that are more fuel efficient
  2. Creating more rail links, making the city less dependent on trucks to transport food and goods into the city
  3. Congestion price traffic below 60th Street in Manhattan or toll the East River bridges.

Just implementing these three measures would reduce the amount gas consumed by the city dramatically. In addition they would greatly ease traffic in the city which will reduce the amount of idling and increase fuel economy for the remaining cars, not to mention reducing the amount of pollution. These are relatively painless measures that could greatly improve quality of life for the average New Yorker.

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At 2:32 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

But hybrid technology paves the way for plug-in hybrid technology which paves the way for all-electric increase miles per gallon, fuel

saver, increase gas mileage
vehicles.Still, hybrids run on gasoline, which is not an alternative to gasoline no matter

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