Sunday, February 17, 2008

Ban Van - Environmental Impact of Mini Vans

Ban Van is a site dedicated to reminding the drivers of minivans, SUV's and pick-up trucks that others out there are getting along fine with cars.

If there are 250,000,000 automobiles in the United States and roughly 18% are pick-up trucks and 10% are minivans and 15% are SUVs then if all these drivers went to cars, the oil we would save with associated emissions, would be 40% or almost 900 million barrels of oil a year.

We understand there are reasons for owning a minivan, SUV or pick-up truck. We expect for people involved in farming, building, etc. that trucks are a necessity.

But for others... just look around. How many times have to seen one person in a minivan or SUV? The answer is almost all the time. Sometimes there are two and on occasion a family. A family of four easily fits into a car. A family of five can too although admittedly not as easily. But you need to look at how often your whole family travel together. Maybe two cars for those occasions would be more efficient.

What about sports and camping? Again, look around, there are many people who handle sports and camping with cars. Minivans are more convenient but they are not a necessity. The majority of the time you just do not need a minivan. We camp and coach soccer with a hatchback. Most of Europe does the same with smaller hatchbacks. To wean yourselves from the minivan, try a station wagon.

What about safety and visibility on the roads? Half the visibility problem is that there are too many minivans on the road! You cannot see through a minivan. You can see through cars. You are improving safety of others by not driving a minivan. If you are driving an SUV so you can avoid getting stuck then it is just not worth it. If you bought it so you can drive it off road - get real.

Think of the environment. Baring some sort of government intervention, we can only do this one person at a time.