23 January 2009

the pinch at the pump cliche

written by EcoDeaf contributor, Shay Bertling

Sure, we might be letting out a collective sigh of relief this winter as gas prices sink to levels that we haven’t seen in years, but this summer fuel craze coupled with the economy on a downward spiral was enough to raise alarm on the drawing boards of many American companies that associate their services or products with the availability and cost of gasoline that gets pumped to us from whatever country that we have control over at the time.

One of those notable companies is the ZipCar franchise, headquartered in Boston and co-founded in 2000 by Robin Chase. Since then, the franchise has rapidly increased in popularity and by the end of 2002, 170 Zipcars were streaking around Boston, New York, and Washington, to annual revenues at the tune of $2.1 million. Every year, ZipCar increases its prices by 3-5% and with gasoline climbing at the rate of 36% annually, can’t expect to keep up with the trend and continue to turn a buck for long.

Gas prices are going to keep going up. You’ve heard of peak oil, No? Wiki it. The first line will tell you that “this is the point in time when the maximum rate of global petroleum extraction is reached, after which the rate of production enters terminal decline.” How it will happen is not so important as what will happen when it does. We need to curb this appetite for oil. Fortunately, many people feel the same way and strategies are everywhere.

Take, for example, just the growing production of vegetable-based biodiesel that contributed $4 billion dollars to the American economy last year. Pumps are cropping up all over the world to supply motorists with this preciously beneficial alternative to conventional diesel fuel, which is used in much of the heavy machinery that rumble behind the stage of our prosperity. The advantage of using biodiesel is unmistakable, burning much cleaner, kinder, and more efficiently in all kinds of motors from the one in our grocery getter to the one in the plane that carries you overseas, not even to forget the one in your public transit bus, your train, your asphalt paver, your cruise liner, your ski lift, your farmer’s tractor, your.. Just think about it. Leaps become bounds.

Educate yourself at http://www.biodieselsustainability.com/ and improve your car-ma!


  1. Great source of information! It's time to phase out the oil industry.

    Philadelphia has one of their own called PhillyCarShare. Here's the link:


    There's two cars available right around the corner of my home on a parking lot for the public to use. I haven't used it yet.

  2. I agree! We need to phase out the oil industry. I like how you put it. :)

    Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is asking Obama to allow the California state implement their tougher tailpipe rules without waiting for the federal government to take action. The Bush Administration blatantly refused to let California to go ahead with it. Obama has the chance to let it happen. I think he will, but how soon? :)

    Schwarzenegger asks Obama for tailpipe rules


  3. Update on Obama and California tailpipe rules

    Obama’s Grip on Automakers Would Grow Under Emissions Decision
    By John Hughes and Alan Ohnsman


    Looks like we're getting there! Press the reset button! ;)