A Timely Reform by Ian Ridley

Blog & web site of Ian Ridley

Targetting those….. Part 2

Back to the 4×4 /SUV issue (and I see the Lib Dem VED and indeed air travel policies have got some publicity today)

I was accused of demonising all 4×4 drivers. Well I wouldn’t quite call it that but perhaps I could have been more precise:

– Not all 4x4s are the top polluters;
– so it follows that not all 4×4 drivers are selfish. And of course some 4x4s are essential for professional use.

But there are a hell of a lot of top polluting SUVs and 4X4s out there that are just fashion accessories. But fashion accessories that are adding to greenhouse gas emissions. Individually a 4×4 that goes out on the occaisional journey may seem to be not a big deal but the sums add up. Just like that coal fired power station, those short haul and long haul flights.

I would like here to pay tribute to my commenters Alex/ Richard, who have pulled me up short on my random generalising (there’s no fun left in the world – I’ll tell you). I even have to add an extra category of responsible 4×4 owners: hardly use it but carbon offset the emissions and not even in that temporary “we’ll plant some trees” way.

To continue: switching to a lower emission vehicle might not seem like making a big difference, nor does turning off the TV rather than leaving it on standby or putting a wind turbine on your roof. But spread across millions of people, particularly when we are looking at an industrialised China & India joining the “developed” energy-rich world, it is crucial to the environmental future of the planet.

Finally as a tall chap myself (6’5″) I have found it difficult to find a suitable car to drive too. I learnt to drive in a Corsa 5 years ago. We had a Vectra for a while but it wasn’t good for my back. My older Cavalier was/is better for that. Now we have a Zafira – much better for someone my height but the 204 g/km of CO2 it chucks out is not ideal. Not so much a tank, more like an APC.

In fact there is web site that rates cars by ergomic comfort:

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