The discovery of oil as somewhat of a replacement for burning the likes of coal may have marginally worked out to be a little better in terms of environmental impact, but that really was just a slight migration from one fossil fuel to another. In any case, this slight migration or supplementation was and still is driven by operational efficiency rather than a consideration of its environmental impact. We mustn’t make any mistakes about it – it is indeed all about the money first and the rest later, so environmental impact comes in a lot lower down the pecking order.
Testimony to this is how world leaders like Donald Trump are pushing for a withdrawal from the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, which means those of us who are concerned about the environment as a result of the consequences of how we interact with our world will have to come together and take it upon ourselves to try and make the change we want to see.
Granted, there are many world leaders in very powerful positions who perhaps have the power to do more than what they’re currently doing and perhaps affect greater change, but then again they have a lot of other issues to deal with – issues that have them believing that environmental affairs don’t quite hold the same importance. So yeah, it’s up to us, but what exactly can you do as part of your contribution to make travel, in particular, more eco-friendly?
Traveling is the one thing we do just about every day, whether for work or for leisure. Unfortunately traveling is a major source of the type of pollution which, to put it bluntly, is destroying our planet. You can discover more about the carbon footprint of flying here.
Think about how much jet fuel is burned for you to take your cross-country flight. Is that better or worse than the impact of the fuel burned for you to fly across the world, given that a short flight can perhaps be substituted with a drive or a trip on the train? It can be really hard to tell…
All you can do on an individual level is back your concern up with some small, everyday actions to affirm your commitment to making travel more eco-friendly, which would entail something like driving a car with a smaller engine, perhaps even going electrical or hybrid with your car (if you have the money), being strategic about your flights and choosing cleaner transportation modes when you’re just popping down to the store or someplace nearby. You could perhaps cycle or walk as opposed to starting up your car and unnecessarily polluting the air further, for instance.
Lift clubs make for another great way to not only reduce carbon emissions as part of a concerted effort with your friends and colleagues, so if you’re all driving to and from the same general areas when going to work, why not use one car and fill up as many of its seats as you can? That would also save a lot of you some money on petrol.