Tag Archives: autonomous vehicles

Will Self-Driving Cars Reduce Emissions?

Audi Alco Concept car

Audi's Aicon Concept autonomous, all-electric car has no steering wheel or pedals with a range of close to 500 miles per charge. Photo: Audi

Despite recent fatal accidents, there is little question that self-driving cars are here to stay. What is not yet clear is whether driverless cars represent an environmental boon or an unforeseen emissions nightmare. The answer is up to us.

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By the Numbers

Currently 50 million households suffer from food insecurity, meaning that family members cannot always meet their basic food needs.

10 million people a year could be fed through the recovery of just one-fifth of food waste.

Only 2% of food waste is composted or otherwise recycled—62% of paper is recycled.

Consumers throw out about 40% of the fresh and frozen fish they buy.

The U.S. produced 208 pounds of meat per person in 2009—60% more than Europe.

Low income commuters spend a much higher proportion of their wages on gas—8.6% versus 2.1% at $4 per gallon.

Food prices rose 35-40 percentage points between 2002–2008.

Americans consume 25% of the world’s produced oil, but our nation holds less than 3% of the world’s proven oil reserves.

The International Energy Agency says greenhouse gas emissions rose 3.2% last year, with a 9.3% increase in China offsetting declines in the US and EU.

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