May 26, 2008
The Consumer Federation of America, a consortium of over 300 nonprofit, pro-consumer organizations, released its first quarterly report on consumption, prices, and imports of oil: Ending America’s Oil Addiction (18 pp.). Among its more notable findings:
- Per capita gas consumption is down about 6% since 2004.
- Automobiles emit about 23.9 pounds of CO2 gas for every gallon of gas consumed.
- In the first quarter of 2007, that amounted to about 400 million tons of CO2 emitted into the atmosphere.
- The price of gas today is over 150% higher than in 2002, with an increase of almost $2.00 per gallon.
- Over the past three years, polls indicate that more of us are expressing “great concern” over oil prices (73% today versus 46% in 2004). We‘re also more concerned over the effect of increasing imports on national security (60% to 48%). However, the percent expressing “great concern” over global warming in that period has only inched up from 36 to 37%.
- Large increases in prices and expenditures are not being nearly matched by declines in consumption.
- Sales of more fuel-efficient vehicles are on the rise but, again, not in proportion to the increased costs of fuel.
- The CFA’s conclusions may be summarized thus: We care about the issues involved in our addiction to oil, but are unable to do much about them without congressional mandates for more fuel-efficient standards and through the implementation of other measures.
Go to Report (.pdf)