Saturday, March 28, 2009

A follow-up on the question of flying vs driving

So, I have a question for my loyal readers (all four and that robot run by Google).

If you are going on a trip and decide to drive but you know that the airplane is going to fly with or without you, and that "your" seat is going to be empty, are you now producing the equivalent CO2 of flying+driving?

That is, the car you drive is producing X kg of CO2 for the trip, and there is an empty seat in an airplane and if you were in that seat, it would count as Y kg of CO2, are you responsible for X+Y kg of CO2, or just X kg of CO2?

I don't want to say what I think; I want your thoughts.

Before you answer, consider this scenario and question: You and your neighbor are part of the neighborhood watch and you are both going to the police station for a neighborhood watch meeting. Are you responsible for the emissions of both vehicles if your neighbor offers to carpool and you refuse?

1 comment:

Grumpator said...

No, because in both situations, the plane or your neighbor's CO2 production is independent of my actions. For example, even if I weren't going on a trip, the plane is still flying on a regular basis. Or if I'm sick and decide not to even go to the neighborhood watch meeting, my neighbor is still going. I'm not responsible for that CO2 production, so I think that I am only responsible for MY CO2 production.

Of course, it would be better to carpool when possible to the meeting, which is the more responsible decision. As far as the trip goes, there are too many mitigating factors to make a completely informed decision as to which is better.