Earth Day: How much energy would the U.S. save if ten percent of the population switched to hybrids

We here at AutoblogGreen are big on technology that can lower environmental impact. Hybrids are widely touted as one way of doing that although some are much better at it than others. With over a million of the most popular hybrid, the iconic Prius, being sold there must be a noticeable decrease in the amount of gas being burned by Americans, right? Have you ever wondered how much gas would be saved if we all drove a Prius? About half, unless we all drive like Danika. OK, that's an unlikely scenario. How about if 10 percent of the car-driving public used some kind of hybrid? With 2.2 percent of the cars sold last year being hybrids it seems we are on our way to that small milestone.

After pulling out my slide rule (and then putting it away after I remembered I never did learn how to use it), calculator and a copy of the I Ching, I set out to solve this problem of the ages. According to the Department of Energy (DOE) we burned through 9,290,000 barrels (390 million gallons) of gas a day in 2007, which is about half of all finished petroleum used - so we're not even talking about diesel or aviation fuel. Using advanced algebraic formulae which required the participation of all of my fingers and toes, I've deduced we could save about 6,285,000,000 gallons each year (around 16 days worth of gas) if ten percent of us drove hybrids. A big number indeed but one I hope we can soon surpass.

[Source: Energy Information Administration]

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