Friday, May 17, 2013

Cars and climate change

Our car is 10 years old.  We own a Toyota Corolla.  At the time, it had very good emissions compared with other vehicles.  It's been a good car.  It's still going strong.

But because it is a decade old, we have been keeping an eye on other cars and considering which one will replace this one when the time comes.  The other day we got a great offer in the mail from Toyota to replace this one - cash incentives and 0% interest.  Sounds good - and we were tempted.  But the truth of the matter is that the least expensive option is still our current car.

When we do get a new car, we'd like it to be a hybrid.  And the one we would like is a Toyota Prius (one of the 3 styles, anyhow).  And they are expensive.  I think it was going to be $215 every 2 weeks (or maybe it was more). A new Corolla is a lot cheaper.  It would cost us less.  And it is tempting.

If you've been following my blog for any length of time, you'll know that I am a bit of an environmentalist.  But over the past year or so, my convictions have weakened.  I've actually allowed over-packaged granola bars and Babybel cheeses back into the house.  I've not been bombarded with news about climate change - partly because I unsubscribed to many of the Facebook pages that I used to read regularly.  It was just too depressing.

And then an article comes along like this one:  http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/05/11/us-climate-carbon-idUSBRE9490YD20130511

And another like this one: http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2013/may/17/global-warming-not-stalled-climate#start-of-commentshttp://bit.ly/14s0XSE

And I realize that the cost of our vehicle to us, in dollars, every two weeks, is maybe not as important as reducing our carbon emissions.  And if we CAN afford to do it, maybe we should.

But, I still feel that using the old vehicle is better - maybe not for emissions, but for the use of metals and plastics and new materials.  So we'll use it until it is no longer viable.  Then we will likely take the dive and spend a little more on a vehicle that puts out fewer emissions.  It feels like a responsibility that we shouldn't be slack on simply because of money (that we have but might rather put into a vacation or dinners out).

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