Green Cars

I'd Rather Be Riding My Bike

Now that you’ve decided on a green lifestyle it’s time to consider:

What are green cars?

What are green driving options?

Is there a way to make my current vehicle greener?


The greenest vehicle may be the one you already own. Interested in getting the most from your ride?

Top Ten Gasoline Saving Tips

Take advantage of alternate forms of transportation.

Stocking up at the grocery store may not be feasible when you’re on your bike, but for quick trips for just a few items consider walking, riding your bike or taking the bus. Not driving your car saves the most gasoline!

Carpool

Have coworkers in the same area? Another family in the neighborhood headed to the same soccer practice? Consider creating a carpool. Make a flyer to hang in the break room or to pass out at football practice. You may be surprised at the time and money you save by sharing rides!

Continue Reading Top Ten Gasoline Saving Tips ...


Have a diesel vehicle that you want to make into a green car? Consider biodiesel.

Biodiesel

Bio-fuels, biodiesel in particular, are made from biological ingredients such as plant oils or animal fats rather than fossil fuels. Most bio-diesel is sold as a blend. For example, B20 is 20% bio-diesel and 80% diesel.

  • Bio-diesel is 10 times less toxic than table salt
  • Diesel vehicles need little or no modification to use bio-diesel
  • Bio-diesel lubricates the engine, decreasing engine wear and tare
  • Bio-diesel releases fewer emissions, is a renewable source of energy and is biodegradable
Biodiesel

Learn more about Biodiesel


Electric Car

Electric Cars

Electric cars are green cars powered by a battery or batteries which run an electric motor. Some advantages for electric cars are:

  • Environmentally Friendly – Electric cars emit ZERO tailpipe pollutants and electricity from nuclear power, hydropower, solar power, wind-powered or alternative fuels plants release no air pollutants
  • Energy Efficient – gasoline vehicles convert 17-21% of stored energy to power at the wheels whereas electric cars convert 59–62% of the electrical energy from the grid to power at the wheels, which makes for much greener driving
  • Reduce Energy Dependence – Electricity is a domestic and renewable energy unlike fossil fuels such as gasoline
  • Performance - Electric cars provide a quiet and smooth ride, stronger acceleration and don't need as much maintenance as internal combustion engines

Continue learning about electric cars


Happy with your bicycle but need a car a couple of times a month? Consider a flex car.

Flex Car

A flex car is a vehicle that is part of a car-sharing service or a short-term (few hours) rental.

Want to learn more about flex cars and why they're a green cars option?


Hybrid Vehicles

Hybrid Vehicle green cars are a mix between standard gasoline internal combustion engines and electric cars. Why drive a green technology hybrid vehicle?

  • When the hybrid vehicle stops, the gasoline engine – only used for acceleration - will automatically turn off and then restart whenever the car is put into gear
  • Hybrid vehicles recharge their batteries by using the kinetic energy generated during braking
  • Hybrid vehicles' engines generate fewer emissions, provide good mileage, idle less, and are fuel efficient – 20-30 MPG higher than same non-hybrid model
  • There are numerous hybrid vehicles in production, they are reasonably priced, and you may even qualify for a tax break!

Continue your hybrid vehicle research here.


Hydrogen Cars

Hydrogen cars run via a hydrogen fuel cell, which converts hydrogen to electricity, producing heat and water, which is emitted from the car as steam. Although several hydrogen cars are in concept phase, there are only a few in production – the Chevy Equinox, the BMW 745h and the Honda FCX, which is currently available for lease in California. The barriers to green technology hydrogen cars are:

Hydrogen Car
  • Hydrogen fuel is produced either via electrolysis, which often uses electricity produced by coal, or by extracting it from natural gas, which produces carbon emissions, which is is the opposite of reducing your carbon footprint
  • Hydrogen fuel is very flammable (Hindenburg, anyone?) and storage is a concern for this alternative fuel
  • When it gets warm, hydrogen fuel expands, creating the need for a ventilated gas tank … and if your hydrogen car sits somewhere warm for too long, you may not have any hydrogen fuel left
  • A fleet of hydrogen cars would necessitate new infrastructure for hydrogen fuel filling stations, which could cost up to $500 Billion

Read more about hydrogen cars.


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