Treebeard's Homepage : Stumpers

Treebeard's Stumper
11 May 2001

Go The Extra Mile

You're driving a long distance, but you're running low on gas. You could drive slower, but that takes more time and might use more gas. Driving faster will get you there quicker, but doesn't that use even more gas overall? What's your best strategy to get the most miles per gallon of your remaining fuel? Is there a sweet spot for your speed that gives the best fuel efficiency? With local gas prices now above two dollars per gallon, and continuing power shortages in California, and a controversial new national energy policy soon to be announced, this question is an interesting parable.

Local gas prices are up, and so is the average size of the cars I see at my rural school. Conservation means doing more with what we have, not necessarily making do with less. My stumper doesn't depend on what car you drive, though maybe it should. What's the best way to go the extra mile with the limited fuel you already have in the tank? Do we really need a new national energy policy that puts increased production above efficiency?

Answer


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Copyright © 2001 by Marc Kummel / mkummel@rain.org