In Idaho, transportation accounts for the greatest amount of climate-changing pollution. So to make the most significant reduction to greenhouse gases, we Idahoans can drive less and invest in electric and hybrid cars and trucks.
Strategies for Driving Less
Driving less not only helps the planet, it’s also good for your wallet. You probably can’t eliminate driving entirely, but you can cut down with just a few strategies:
- Combine your errands and map the smartest route.
- Carpool with friends, family, neighbors or coworkers.
- For shorter trips, choose healthy, enjoyable alternatives like biking or walking.
EVs Are an Affordable Option
As you think about replacing your current vehicle, look into an electric vehicle (EV). Electric vehicles are fueled at least in part by electricity. Battery-electric cars and trucks use an electric motor powered by batteries or a fuel cell. Hybrids operate on more than one fuel, generally electricity and gasoline.
You might say, “But EVs and hybrids are too expensive!” That may have been the case in the past. But times are changing, prices are dropping and manufacturers are bumping up their production of battery-electric and hybrid vehicles.
The sticker price for that EV you’re considering may be higher than the gasoline-powered equivalent. But that price doesn’t reflect the $7,500 federal tax credit you can claim or the annual fuel savings you will realize. Suddenly, that EV is looking good!
Range Anxiety—A Concern of the Past?
Many people cite “range anxiety” as the reason they haven’t considered an EV. Range anxiety is the concern about how far your car can travel on a single charge. More practically, it’s about whether you can find a place to charge your car when the battery dwindles. However, analysis of people’s driving has found that 87% of trips are within the range of EVs.
Plus more charging stations are being built. ICL partnered with Idaho Power, the Snake River Alliance and Whole Foods to install one of the growing number of stations in the state. And while we’re used to seeing gas stations everywhere, charging stations aren’t always so obvious. Now several apps can help you find a charging station near you.
Working Toward a Clean Energy Future
More EVs are showing up on our roads as people recognize the economic benefits and seek to limit climate-changing pollution. Now it’s your turn. Think about what you can do to reduce your transportation-related pollution. Together, we can keep Idaho’s air clean for today and for future generations!