Some solutions to pump prices

By Bret Clevenger

Gas prices are high. I know this. You know this. We all know this. The problem is it seems like it’s the only thing we all know.

Everyone loves to compare DeKalb’s prices to their hometown pumps to see who’s getting ripped off the most.

Ask these same people what they’re going to do about it and their answer is typically “I dunno.”

I’ve never understood this.

I’m not saying by walking to class you’re going to lower the price of gas 10 cents, but there are ways to lower the burden of gasoline.

First of all, for those of you who haven’t noticed, parking around campus isn’t exactly ample.

Try taking a bike to class instead. You can pick up a mountain bike for just under 20 gallons of gas, or $53. It’s cheaper than driving, it’s easier than walking, and maybe you could even take it off some sweet jumps.

If you’re looking for a little more serious way to pay less at the pump, consider purchasing a gas-electric hybrid vehicle.

Today’s hybrids are far more stylish than the box with wheels we’re all accustomed to seeing.

In fact, for those of you who feel the need to drive a bus on the interstate, Toyota even has a hybrid Sport Utility Vehicle. A hybrid SUV. What’s the world coming to?

Toyota claims its hybrid SUV can get up to 33 miles per gallon. Sure beats the 11 miles per gallon averaged in tests.

For those of you willing to drive a bit smaller vehicle there are multiple choices. The Civic, produced by Honda, gets up to 47 miles per gallon.

The Prius hybrid from Toyota, used by the University Police, averages 55 miles to the gallon.

And the Prius and Civic probably aren’t as expensive as you’d believe.

The starting price for a hybrid Civic is $20,900. For the Prius the price $21,275, but that’s before the tax incentive of up to $2,000 the federal government gives to those who buy a hybrid.

Suddenly a hybrid vehicle isn’t all that expensive.

Not only is gasoline conservation better for your wallet, it’s also better for the United States and the world.

According to Robert Kennedy Jr. of the Natural Resource Defense Council, if the United States could lower its miles per gallon by 2.7 we would eliminate the need to import Persian Gulf oil.

Also, with China’s recent boom in oil consumption, a conflict over the valuable resource is possible.

Lower consumption by U.S. consumers would ease this tension. By helping your wallet, you’re really helping everyone.

It’s time we all stop idly standing around complaining about gas prices.

Americans get some of the best gas prices in the world. Seeing $5.79 per gallon in Britain, $5.57 in Germany or $6.48 in the Netherlands all make $2.75 in DeKalb seem not that bad.

We have solutions. We have a relatively easy situation. What’s there to really complain about?

Columns reflect the opinions of the author and not necessarily that of the Northern Star staff.