Saturday, August 2, 2008

We Can Make a Difference ... Right?

Hey, look what we did! Gas prices are down a little, consumer confidence is up a little. Why? The analysts say it's because we are driving less. Demand goes down, prices go down.

So when folks say there is nothing much we as individuals can do about our economy, it's just not true. We can have to huge effect on the economy if we all change what we do at the same time.

But, wait! Yesterday while driving to an appointment I saw more RV's on the highway in one afternoon than we saw on our entire trip to and from California to Tulsa for my mother's 90th birthday. What does this mean? It means a lot of folks have been waiting for gas prices to go down to hit the road. Now they're on the road en mass again.

Whoops! Are we already making a difference again?? Driving more?? If so ... demand goes up, prices go up. If we really want to get and keep gas prices down, we need to drive less. Far less. Not just for a little while, but regularly. We can 't fall back into our previous driving habits now that we've seen a little relief. We need to keep the changes we've been making in place, and make them as permanent as we can.

Because we make a big difference! After all, the prices that seem like such a relief right now were considered astronomical just a couple months ago.

Seems in addition to driving less, we can make a difference by driving slower. Our neighbor is on a It's Cool to Drive Slow! Save Gas ... Enjoy the Journey campaign. She's passing out bumper stickers and getting us all to join her Drive Slow campaign. The result is better milage, less gas, lower prices ... if lots of us do it.

We can make a difference!


Sarah Edwards said...

I know someone is going to realize that I've made these observations while driving. So, Sarah, you may ask, why you doing so much driving?
In truth we almost cancelled our trip to see my mother, but we hadn't seen her in two years and she'd been counting on our visit all year. Also we realized this will probably be our last such trip ... so we went and it was a treasured time.
As for my trip yesterday, our community is an hour from everything! Yes, gas prices have hit everyone hard. But here's what we're doing. We're consolidating trips into the city so we can go in less often and we're coordinating shopping with others so everyone can go in less. Fortunately my husband and I work from home so most days we don't drive at all. But others who live here have to commute, so car pools and ride-sharing groups are forming. Hopefully we'll all make a habit of these changes. I know I intend to.

Sarah Edwards said...

If you would like the details of why it's so important not to slide back into our pre-peak gas price ways, check out this article by Richard Heinberg, Oil Prices Fall, Peak-Oil a Non-Problem? at
Let's don't fall into this trap.