Travel is not negotiatiable, but just how you travel is negotiable, and small changes can make a big impact on the envirornment — and also save the green in your wallet.
These tips on making your getaway more green from no less an authority than the Union of Concerned Scientists
Flying — First class, business class and economy-plus can double the carbon footprint of an airplane. The airlines and aircraft that are the most green are the ones with the most seats. The cheap seats are not the most comfortable, but they are the most green. Also, newer, narrow-body planes are up to 34 percent more energy efficient than older models. So if you are committed to flying green, choose an airline with a newer, more energy efficient fleet.
Flying vs. Driving — If you are traveling alone or with just one other person on a trip 500 miles or more, flying direct in coach produces fewer carbon emissions than driving.
Hop on the Bus — Compared with flying coach, the Union of Concerned Scientists says bus travel cut’s your carbon footprint by 55 percent to 75 percent, depending on distance travelled. New companies like Megabus and old reliables like Greyhound are adding new routes and new perks like wi-fi, so it’s definitely worth taking another look at bus travel.
Take the Train — Trains emit 60 percent less carbon per mile than a typical car with one occupant. Plus, trains drop you downtown, so you save the time, money and carbon emissions of a shuttle bus or taxi ride from the airport to downtown, since you are already there.
Rent a Car — If your beloved Old Breakdown in the driveway is a gas guzzling SUV, consider renting a fuel efficient vehicle instead for a long trip. A 30 mpg vehicle can cost $100 less over a 500-mile trip compared with driving an SUV you own (including fuel costs, rental fee, maintenance, and depreciation). And at the same time, the fuel-efficient rental is kicking out almost half as much global warming pollution.
Just some things to think about as we make our way into this new decade.
What do you think? We value your comments and love hearing from you.