The Great Depression Online

Great Depression Online Archive Issue:

A Hummer More Ecologically Friendly than a Prius?

Inside This Issue You Will Discover…

*** A Hummer More Ecologically Friendly than a Prius
*** Heap On The Seconds
*** A Funny Bone
*** And More

A Hummer More Ecologically Friendly than a Prius?

“Feeling a bit smug about owning that hybrid?” 

So began an article in the March 23, 2007 Investors Business Daily… 

“Better rein in that contempt for those who still drive primitive conventional cars.  It seems that a Hummer is more ecologically friendly than a Prius.”

We like this sort of loaded irony the way we like a Thanksgiving feast…  We like to savor its richness before we go back and heap on the seconds.

“The feature that makes a Prius such a draw for the environmentally conscience is really its weak spot: the battery.  Like all hybrid batteries, it’s of the nickel metal hydride variety.  The nickel for the Prius is mined in Sudbury, Ontario, and smelted at a plant nearby.”

“The landscape around the plant at the city’s edge alarms environmentalists.  Some eco-activists blame the bleak lifeless countryside near the facility in part on its 1,250-foot smokestack that belches acid-rain causing sulphur dioxide.”


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Heap On The Seconds

Now, to heap on the seconds…

“While the Prius digs a deep environmental rut, the Hummer H3 plods on with a much lighter touch.  An H3 costs $2.07 per lifetime mile to operate in environmental terms, while the Prius costs $2.87.  Figures courtesy of CNW Marketing.”

And here’s the kicker…

“Then there’s the expected life span of the Prius: 100,000 miles, or a third of the Hummer’s, says CNW.  Toyota would have to go through the same ‘build, sell, drive and dispose’ process three times for three Priuses to provide the same amount of service provided by one H3.”

A Funny Bone

This story hits a certain funny bone in us.  For we find the Prius to be the most irritating car to hit the marketplace since the Hummer.  To clarify, our irritation is not with the car itself.  It’s what’s in these cars that we take issue with… 

Namely the driver.  And in the case of a Prius, the enlightened sense of green moral superiority that they radiate while merging between us degenerate souls driving in our standard combustion powered engine vehicles and wicked SUVs.

Not that we drive an SUV.  We prefer the practical; and for us that’s a 2000 Toyota Camry.  But that’s the very point.  You should drive what you want…what pleases you…what you find moves you most.  If that be a Prius, great.  If it’s a gas guzzling Hummer, and you can afford it, swell. 

Just don’t cast your green superiority too far.  For, as this article points out, you may just be harming the environment more than the rest of us.


M.N. Gordon
Great Depression Online

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