Those that can afford to lead by example don’t

Many of us have seen this time and time again. The people who can afford to lead by example don’t. What is most interesting here is that many of these people are the loudest ones complaining about environmental issues or gas prices. Al Gore in my opinion is an example of this. Here you have someone screaming and yelling about global warming. But his very large home sure didn’t seem to be doing anything to resolve the problem. And yes no matter how others may feel. I do think that global warming is an issue. It’s interesting how I’ve seen several jokes in our local newspaper recently about people wanting to see some of that global warming. Do to the recent cold spell that has been occurring in our region. The interesting think here is this. These people tend to forget that they may be seeing this type of weather do to negative climate changes. Some would argue that weather patterns just go in cycles. That the current weather is nothing more than a different type of cycle taking place. Although I think most people would agree that humans do in fact have a big impact upon the environment in which we live. Most of us don’t take that fact very seriously.

Some celebrities are on the Toyota Prius kick. This is the car my household would have purchased if it would have been in budget. What you have to wonder though is how many of these celebrities are actually making other changes in their lives and around their homes to backup all of the talking they do. I constantly get annoyed by the people who moan and groan about gas prices but don’t want to do anything to solve the problem. It’s funny to me that the people who can lead by example and complain the loudest sometimes. Don’t in fact take steps to resolve the problem by making a vehicle purchase that would lower their gasoline dependency. Prices for environmentally friendly vehicles have come down to a somewhat reasonable point. For the average household these type of vehicles are still out of reach. But most upper middle class should in fact be able to afford a vehicle that is less gas dependent. A key thing to point out here is that you no longer have to sacrifice features when purchasing a more environmentally friendly vehicle.

Yes the Toyota Prius has had it’s share of growing pains. Most of these have been quickly acknowledged and resolved. Finding a gas station that carries gasoline for your flex fuel vehicle can still be a challenge. Biodiesel is still hard to find and no one wants to carry around their own supply. You see this with all the environmental car gatherings that try to promote being more eco-friendly. Your average person isn’t going to want to hunt down the regional biodiesel manufacturer. Which in many cases is someone in their backyard. Many people would point out that with flex fuels you can take a performance hit. Meaning you get less miles per gallon of fuel. So it is only economically beneficial to use these type of fuels at certain price points. My viewpoint is our local retailer that carries flex fuels seems to go out of their way to not make them attractive to the consumer. I’m sure that company would argue they are just passing on their cost with some profit attached.

The point I’m trying to make is should you have the right to complain just because your unwilling to change? This isn’t a case of where a company can improve customer service or make changes to make a product better. You have a resource that is known to cause environmental and health problems. This resource will run out at some point in time. Shouldn’t society take steps to move to a renewable source of fuel? Many would argue that this also has it’s own set of problems. Production of biodiesel is said to cause similar issues as regular gas production. Others argue you don’t get the performance factor from each gallon of E85. That the energy taken to produce the product is actually higher. These people argue that this negates any environmental benefit. It’s interesting how they ignore a few factors though. Even if no major production benefit is there. Isn’t it better to produce a product from a renewable source? Versus having a product that comes from a source that will run out sooner or later?  If the vehicles that run the environmentally friendly fuel have less emissions. That fact alone has to have a positive impact.

A lot of people have stated there won’t be enough corn or other source material to produce alternative fuel. With E85 we have seen where cost per gallon isn’t always going to be beneficial to the consumer. Many have stated that E85 demand will increase corn prices and cause food prices to rise. Others have stated that there is no way to even begin to produce enough corn to meet E85 demand if it became extremely popular. So what about biodiesel? We have tons of restaurants that produce the byproduct needed to produce biodiesel. Doesn’t it make sense to try and put waste product to a more beneficial use? This also makes us less dependent upon foreign sources to fuel our vehicles. Shouldn’t our country and others be as self sufficient as possible even in a global economy?

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