Over the last few weeks Ive suddenly woken-up to noticing more 4×4s or CaRVans RVs as their called in the USA. I wondered why the overnight emergence of such petrol guzzlers? Is it the power of their ego trip or is the need to own a giant car an essential must have . Or is owning an RV todays necessary requirement for acquiring an extension to your house? In other words, what is, pardon the pun, fuelling or driving the need for such exuberance, in the context of uncaring about the future?
Many have suggested that the live for now or there is nothing we can do attitude is prevailing. Others suggest that non-conformance attitude by powers such as the USA and China to the Kyoto agreement influences peoples attitudes. In addition, the USA have recently been accused of distorting / misrepresenting or more likely misinterpreting key data regarding the green-house effect.
I wonder if the attitude of disillusionment has something to do with a post September 11th attitude The enjoy today as tomorrow may never come attitude. This short-termism will not only have an obvious impact on future generations but also on todays financial climate. If we are to believe the metrological experts then any impact on the environment will create a ripple effect. Take for example last years unfortunate disaster in New Orleans and the damage caused to oil platforms in the Mexican gulf. Fuel prices soared and associated availability was also hit.
Is there a solution? Here are a few suggestions. Firstly, there is a need for greater education and corporate responsibility. Greater education from a young generation perspective and corporate responsibility from todays oil companies. With regard to the latter, the amount of profit being achieved by the oil giants need to be reviewed from a possible monopolistic undercurrent. Car companies need to develop dual fuel engines (for example the Lexus but without the public paying for a premium for this functionality). In addition, governments should encourage schemes for new types of fuel, offering the public incentives for alternative fuels (e.g: you can convert a conventional petrol engine to run on vegetable oil for approx $1000 in the US).
The 4×4 / RV is an important part of the entire energy drain situation. For example, in the USA Household expenditures for petroleum products gasoline and heating fuels (natural gas or heating oil) have increased by 20 percent in the past two years. Over the past four years, household expenditures on petroleum products have increased by about $1,000 per year. For all but the wealthiest 20 percent of American families, rising petroleum prices have eaten up the entire Bush Administration tax cut.
I guess no one can see the damage that they are causing as their dash boards (showing lifes statistics) are beyond the priorities of todays generation!