Friday, October 26, 2007
Air Pollution - Car vs. Motorcycle vs. Scooter
One gallon of gas burned puts 5lbs of carbon into the earth's atmosphere. I'm going to do some quick math here. My Harley gets about 40mpg. A scooter, say a Yamaha Vino 125 at least doubles that at about 80+mpg.
I commute to work on my Harley around a total of 10 miles per day. That means my motorcycle is spewing into the atmosphere about 5lbs of carbon in one of my 4 day work weeks. (I actually work 5 days a week but hey, I'm trying to keep the math simple here!)
Suppose I commute to work 36 weeks per year. That means my bike is putting 180lbs of carbon into the air in a year, as compared to half that, 90lbs if I were riding the scooter.
Quick Carbon Comparison - My Commute - Car vs. Motorcycle vs. Scooter
Car at 20mpg = 360lbs of carbon into the atmosphere per year @ 72 gallons.
Motorcycle at 40mpg = 180lbs of carbon into the atmosphere per year @ 36 gallons.
Scooter at 80mpg = 90lbs of carbon into the atmosphere per year @ 18 gallons.
Car vs. Scooter = My car would burn 54 more gallons and add 270lbs more carbon into the atmosphere than a scooter would in one year of my commute. Project those figures ten years out, the car would burn 540 more gallons of gas and put 2,700lbs more carbon into the atmosphere than the scooter would.
As you can see, seemingly small differences really make a big difference. In a way, high gas prices may be a blessing in disguise. If a lot of folks drove even a little less because of the cost of gas or switched to a vehicle that is more efficient, it would keep countless tons of carbon out of the earth's atmosphere.
N.(Kano)Miles, Motorcycle and Scooter talk at Kano's Coffee House
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