Friday, May 18, 2007

Burn Calories not Carbon

Catchy little phrase, but I have to admit its not original. It was the title of a piece in the most recent rails to trails magazine. 40% of the trips we take are 2 miles or less but 75% of those trips are taken in a car. Take my commute to work for instance. Its only about 1/2 a mile yet until the Car Free Challenge, I usually drove my car. At the same time that we're using our cars for these short trips many of us could stand to lose a few pounds. Add to that the record high gas prices and we all have a reason to think about which of those trips might be walked or cycled.

So why is it that we all still drive so much? We've build our infrastructure based on the premise of cheep gasoline. In fact until 2004 gasoline prices trended down in inflation dollars with a few notable upward blips. So we don't shop in neighborhood or local stores, we jump on the highway and go to the big box. There we easily find a parking space in the great expanse of pavement.

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