August 22, 2008

EcoDriving Officially Launched in the USA

The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers has just launched a new website, catchily entitled EcoDrivingUSA.com. Slightly disconcertingly the home page assures us that:

What's known as "EcoDriving™" provides easy tips for getting the most mileage out of your vehicle.

Over here in Europe we've been using the word for years, so I can't say I'm awfully pleased to see the AAM claim EcoDriving as their trademark. We've even been using the phrase here on econnexus.org for a couple of months. I guess we'll just have to wait and see if their lawyers get in touch.

Apart from that though we can't quarrel with the basic message, which is that it's easy to reduce your own fuel costs and carbon dioxide emissions by 15% or more by "subtly changing your driving habits and adjusting your maintenance techniques". The alliance have managed to get Arnold Schwarzenegger, the governor of California, to provide the video for their home page. Here are some of the things Arnie had to say:

We hear a lot of ideas from politicians about lowering gas prices and fighting global warming, whether it's biofuels, offshore drilling or nuclear power. None of those will affect gas prices right now. Only you can do that.

If all Americans practiced EcoDriving the reductions in CO2 emissions would be the equivalent of heating and powering nearly 8 cities the size of Los Angeles. We don't have to wait for the politicians to take action. Each of us has the power to make a difference, right now!

Hear, hear!

The EcoDrivingUSA site also shows a map of the United States. At the time of writing only 2 states are colored green – California and Colorado, whose governor Bill Ritter also provides a video. Only 48 more states to go, not forgetting the rest of the planet too. As Arnie puts it:

I hope you will spend some time on this site, finding out just how much you can do to help.

Now I'm going to have to go and lie down. I'm feeling a bit dizzy. For some reason I've suddenly got this strange sensation of deja vu.

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