We all know our society is heavily dependent on gas and vehicles and it is doubtful things will change anytime soon. But have you ever wondered why it takes 2,500 – 5,000 lbs of steel to carry an average person who weighs no more than 170 lbs. What is all this weight? Engine, chassis, body, seats, fuel, radio etc.
How much gas is used to carry this weight around? 14-22 mpg for an average SUV and 25-36 mpg for an average family car. These numbers are usually based on tests done in a lab or under perfect conditions, no wind or cargo. But realistically, the consumption is higher.
Lets take Gardner Expressway, which is just 11 miles in length with average weekday traffic volume of 120,000 vehicles. This is both east and west bound. Assume these are only cars and SUVs with average fuel consumption of 22mpg and average weight of 3,000 lbs then traffic on Gardner consumes about 60,000 gallons per day moving 360M lbs of steel a day!
One barrel of oil produces 19 gallons or 74 liters of gasoline so we need about 3,200 barrels a day to support traffic on Gardner Expressway. BP oil spill in Gulf of Mexico is 70,000 barrels a day.
When can we clean up our act?
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