Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Saving 60-69% On Fuel

A classic case of saving money (and pollution) by picking a smarter car. For her government vehicle, incoming Green Senator Larissa Waters would prefer a Toyota Prius but for now is stuck with the Calais chosen by the conservative senator she was elected to replace.

So what's the difference? A current Toyota Prius consumes 3.9 L/100km, and emits just 89g CO2/km. The Green Vehicle Guide, says the various Calais models consume between 9.8 and 12.6 L/100km (though the holden website cheekily quotes 9.8) and emit between 234 and 298 gCO2/km.

In short, this puts the Prius somewhere between 2.5 - 3.35 times more efficient than the previous senator's car. Or to put it another way, when Senator Waters gets the Prius she wants, the fuel bill will be 60-69% less. That's the kind of difference a smart choice can make.


Stuart McMillen said...

Too bad the carbon tax/ETS doesn't look like it will include petrol. I think this is a real shame, as we should, as a country, be looking at reducing our oil dependence faster than our coal use. (From a strategic sense, since Australia is not a major oil producer).

david said...

Hi Stuart,
Yeah, i get where you're coming from. I'm in two minds.
Excluding passenger and light commercial vehicles does mean less money raised (for renewable energy and other worthwhile things) but it also makes the package more palatable for some voters. The effectiveness versus acceptability tradeoff is a factor in many aspects. That's why the start price won't be $100/tonne ;)
As far as specifically reducing oil consumption is concerned, this can be done through less objectionable measures such as fuel efficiency standards, electric vehicle subsidies, and re-instating the fuel tax indexation.

Stuart McMillen said...

I recommend you signing up to the daily news updates from

Their motto: "Academic rigour, journalistic flair". Their contributors publish articles on these topics every day.

A recent example:

Stuart McMillen said...

And yes, I agree with you that it is often a good idea to pass through smaller changes, with an aim to eventually up-scaling them to the ideal state. Getting the framework in place is the key thing.

david said...

Hi Stuart,
Thanks for the tip - i like it. (And i hope i'm not just saying that because they agree with my view ;)
I read the article you linked to, and another by the same author entitled "carbon tax on petrol has zero chance of cutting emissions". I thought "zero" was a bit harsh, but he made some points i wrote in my original reply (before i editted it for brevity). $26/tonne is 6.5 cents per litre - hardly enough to inspire an average user to buy a Prius, so it's no great loss in that regard. But from the revenue side, the money could have been used for public transport etc. (That's why i'm in two minds)