On NPR's Morning Edition today, there was a report
on how carbon emissions are understood (and often dismissed) in Texas. If you think we're making progress on the environmental awareness front, check this story out (NPR usually adds audio clips to the site a few hours after they air on the radio, so expect that addition later today). The upshot is that in Texas, which would be the world's seventh-largest carbon dioxide polluter in the world if it were an independent country, most people just don't give a rip about emissions. An auto dealers
' association (along with other groups) pressured the state legislature to shy away from any sort of climate change bill, even just to study it. And then there's this:
Climate activists say that giant 14-mile-per-gallon Chevy Suburbans - once marketed as the National Car of Texas - are part of the problem.
Texas is the nation's largest energy hog because it has a lot of industry, a lot of people, a lot of air conditioning, a lot of miles and a lot of big cars. Tangi Spencer, a movie caterer in Dallas, explains the big-car phenomenon in Texas quite simply: "Here, it's the bigger the truck, the better off you are; the bigger the gas guzzler you are, the better off you are."
Still, not all is lost. AutoblogGreen
readers know about Austin's Plug-in Partners
, which was not interviewed in the NPR report. There are some pickups that are better than others in the mileage category
. Also, in the NPR piece, you can almost hear the realization dawning on one woman interviewed when she talks about counting up the number of lightbulbs in her house (174) and feeling a little bit guilty about that. Hey, it's a start.