November 17th, 2006

Dragon b/w

What would an environmentalist drive?

(Hat tip: Jonah Goldberg; Link.)
Most people think in terms of MPG when shopping for aan environmentally friendly (or just plain cheap) car. A recent study has attempted to distill all the environmental costs into a single number – the total energy expended to manufacture, operate, and eventually dispose of each vehicle. The final figure is an energy cost per mile.
The Honda Accord Hybrid has an Energy Cost per Mile of $3.29 while the conventional Honda Accord is $2.18. Put simply, over the “Dust to Dust” lifetime of the Accord Hybrid, it will require about 50 percent more energy than the non-hybrid version, CNW claims.
And even more eyebrow-raising:
For example, while the industry average of all vehicles sold in the U.S. in 2005 was $2.28 cents per mile, the Hummer H3 (among most SUVs) was only $1.949 cents per mile. That figure is also lower than all currently offered hybrids and Honda Civics at $2.42 per mile.
The Toyota Sienna has an energy cost per mile of $2.180, which is below the average of all vehicles tested ($2.281). I suspect the Previa I drive may be a little bit higher, as it's an older model. Also, the Sienna has an estimated lifetime miles of 158,000. My Previa is about to register it's 300,000th mile. This means the costs of production and disposal are cut nearly in half. (Costs of operation and repair either remain constant, or increase somewhat.)
So I don't need to feel guilty about driving my minivan.