I’ve been formulating this post in my brain for a few days….trying to figure out just what I want to say, etc, and after reading some of the comments to my previous two posts about gas and the economy, I want to encourage my friends. Some of you that know me personally know that I rise early (very early) in the morning, and in those early hours, I listen to talk radio before some of my favorite DJs come on the local Christian radio station. Well, the big talk in recent weeks has been the economy (what else? 🙂 ). The one thing that keeps going through my mind is this…..we CAN make a difference. While it doesn’t feel like our one or two (or more?) cars driving a few (or maybe not so few?) miles per day can make a difference, if EVERYONE in the US would make some SMALL changes in their driving habits, it would make a difference in the profit margin for the oil companies and they would take notice. One of the things that I kept hearing, up until just today, was that even though the American public is “whining” (my word) about the price of gas and the price of food, there haven’t been any changes in the buying habits of the American public. While I don’t advocate starving your family by not buying food, I DO advocate and would encourage you all to make changes in your driving habits. I heard this morning that oil companies (gas stations, I think?) are reporting that the total amount of gallons of gas sold this past weekend was down 5% from Memorial Day Weekend last year. THAT”S GREAT!!!!!!!!!!!! And THAT is what is going to get the oil companies to make some changes! We need to continue to reduce the amount of gas that we are using on a daily basis. Instead of driving your kids to school, walk with them, or ride your bikes together……solves two National problems at once….gas prices and the obesity epidemic (and NO, I’m not saying your fat! But we could all use a bit more exercise, it’s good for your body, heart and spirit!). Instead of driving to the grocery store 3 days per week, plan your trip and go once per week. Schedule all of your appointments for one day per week instead of 3 or 4. Reschedule all of the kids’ activities to one (or maybe two) days…..if you can’t do that, then maybe you need to reevaluate how busy your family is and are your kids REALLY benefitting from being in sports AND music AND drama AND church activities AND playgroup AND…..well you get the idea. Carpool! If you and a friend are both going shopping, or both going to the same Bible Study or you work near one another, rather than driving two cars, drive one and share the cost of gas.
I know that for our family, the summer months tend to be filled with activities that necessitate different kids and adults to be at different places on the same night. Well, I have already made arrangements for this summer to hang out where my kids are having Bible Study rather than driving back and forth from home…..while it’s only about 4 miles each direction, that is 8 miles that I don’t need to be driving! I’m going to be attending a summer Bible study on Monday evenings and the first night (this coming Monday) I’m going to see if there is anyone in my part of town that is also attending that wants to carpool/ride share. Again, no point in two of us driving when it isn’t absolutely necessary.
Not only will these changes make a difference in your own gas useage/$$ spent, but it will decrease the demand overall for oil companies which will in turn decrease the cost. I heard several months to a year ago that if EVERY driving American would decrease their gas useage by 3% it would make a SIGNIFICANT difference, and gas prices would have to go down! Even just 3% will make a difference……so what are you going to do today to decrease your gas/diesel useage by 3%?