Living a long way from work can be a pain, don’t you agree? Especially if you have to drive and get stuck in traffic every day, something which can turn a hour commute to something much longer and much more frustrating. How to solve that?
Well, I red an interesting example of how over at greengrowthcc.com. California solved
that problem by trying to solve another. Environmentally friendly cars got access to the carpool lane through the “sticker program”. As far as I understand, smaller and less emitting vehicles could get access to the carpool lane, where you normally have to have several people in the car to drive, which is much faster due to less traffic. In doing so California struck a blow for making owning a “green” vehicle even more attractive. And long distance commuters got an even stronger reason to switch to a cleaner vehicle.
To me, this sounds like a great way to go. The best would be if people lived close enough to work so they could just hop on the old bike in the morning, but solutions like this can stimulate the car fleet to become cleaner. Which is a good thing. Driving is here to stay, so every possible measure to make it cleaner and lessen its impact is needed to stave of those nasty CO2 emissions. And particles. And all the carcinogenic stuff that comes with burning oil.
How to commute greener with bad public transportation access and a long commute can be a problem after all. It can be difficult to fathom how to clean it up and lessen the impact on your personal CO2 footprint. Faster lanes for cleaner vehicles and community carpools may very well be parts of the solution. That way you can still get to work but with less impact then it could have. Or used to have. Add in mandatory eco-driving classes during drivers license application and we might be on to something.
It is possible to green up the long driving commute without those lanes of course but they have acted as a stimuli for greener vehicles, and will continue to do so if the system would be expanded. Without them, why not try to plan the trips to avoid the worst of the traffic, pool up with some buddies also going to the same area, telecommute and adapt the theory of eco-driving. These are all good ways to reduce your impact. It might not be as good as living closer to work, but it sure is better then nothing. Many shallow steams make a river, and one should never disregard even small changes. Like choosing to Commute Greener!