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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Americans Drove 1.4 Billion Fewer Highway Miles in April of 2008 than in April 2007

The Secretary said that Americans drove 1.4 billion fewer highway miles in April 2008 than at the same time a year earlier and 400 million miles less than in March of this year. She added that vehicle miles traveled (VMT) on all public roads for April 2008 fell 1.8 percent as compared with April 2007 travel. This marks a decline of nearly 20 billion miles traveled this year, and nearly 30 billion miles traveled since November.
 

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...and they measure this how? Is Big Brother watching?
If you follow the links you shall find what yee seek:

"Traffic Volume Trends is a monthly report based on hourly traffic count data reported by the States. These data are collected at approximately 4,000 continuous traffic counting locations nationwide and are used to estimate the percent change in traffic for the current month compared with the same month in the previous year. Estimates are re-adjusted annually to match the vehicle miles of travel from the Highway Performance Monitoring System and are continually updated with additional data."

http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/ohim/tvtw/tvtpage.htm
 

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If you follow the links you shall find what yee seek:

"Traffic Volume Trends is a monthly report based on hourly traffic count data reported by the States. These data are collected at approximately 4,000 continuous traffic counting locations nationwide and are used to estimate the percent change in traffic for the current month compared with the same month in the previous year. Estimates are re-adjusted annually to match the vehicle miles of travel from the Highway Performance Monitoring System and are continually updated with additional data."

http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/ohim/tvtw/tvtpage.htm
That's what I was afraid of. There are 4,000 locations along how many miles of pavement?
 

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So now that demand for gas is going down shouldn't prices be going down as well? Nope, they'll just refine less oil, that'll keep the prices nice and high.
This is the conundrum we are in now. Yes we are by far the biggest user of petroleum but we are NOT the fastest growing users. The Asians and Indians are. We are in fact a mature market which is saturated with vehicles. Stats show that there is currently 1 vehicle for every adult of driving age in the US. Only normal population growth will increase our VMT unless we all decided to jump in our vehicles and drive 50 extra miles each week.

But high fuel prices are pushing us the other way. They are also pushing us to stop driving our guzzlers in favor of more efficient vehicles so we are saving the use of fuel in two ways.

But.... whatever we save is dwarfed by the continual growth in India and Asia. They will suck up whatever we save and more. As their economies move out of the 19th Century, more and more of them will want what we have today.......and together there's more then 10 x as many of them as there are of us.

It's ironic that the more we save the more we help them to grow. If we kept using more and more fuel we'd starve them economically. We'd also go broke ourselves.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
These figures are for April. As of the middle of May, the national average for regular gasoline was at $3.80/gallon. Now that it is $4.07, I suspect that the miles driven will fall even faster throughout the summer.
 

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This is the conundrum we are in now. Yes we are by far the biggest user of petroleum but we are NOT the fastest growing users. The Asians and Indians are. We are in fact a mature market which is saturated with vehicles. Stats show that there is currently 1 vehicle for every adult of driving age in the US. Only normal population growth will increase our VMT unless we all decided to jump in our vehicles and drive 50 extra miles each week.

But high fuel prices are pushing us the other way. They are also pushing us to stop driving our guzzlers in favor of more efficient vehicles so we are saving the use of fuel in two ways.

But.... whatever we save is dwarfed by the continual growth in India and Asia. They will suck up whatever we save and more. As their economies move out of the 19th Century, more and more of them will want what we have today.......and together there's more then 10 x as many of them as there are of us.

It's ironic that the more we save the more we help them to grow. If we kept using more and more fuel we'd starve them economically. We'd also go broke ourselves.
Good points. Economically we could prevent them (developing countries) from growth, but we would exhaust the supply ourselves.
 

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That's a pretty big drop! Hopefully something will happen soon with the price situation, if demand keeps going down significantly (and it is, here and around the world). We'll have to see the situation going into summer. Gas has gone up since this report, but traditionally driving goes way up in the summer. So it'll be very interesting to see what happens! I predict it'll dip a bit maybe or remain flat.
 

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I know my own habits have changed. I plan trips, rather than simply getting in to the car every time I think of something that needs doing. I have always been a careful, non- jumpy driver. I was just coming to driving age when the first oil/gas crunch of 1974 hit. So I learned at an early age to be easy on take off, and coasting to stop lights rather than powering near to them and then giving it a bunch of brake. I was able to boast then that my 1970 Sedan deVille got 10 MPG. That was indeed something to crow about back then.

I drive my CTS in this smooth and cautious manner, without holding up traffic of course, and get an average of 21 mpg. I do a good 10 miles on a freeway eah way to work, plus the occasional city trip.
 

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This is the conundrum we are in now. Yes we are by far the biggest user of petroleum but we are NOT the fastest growing users. The Asians and Indians are. We are in fact a mature market which is saturated with vehicles. Stats show that there is currently 1 vehicle for every adult of driving age in the US. Only normal population growth will increase our VMT unless we all decided to jump in our vehicles and drive 50 extra miles each week.

But high fuel prices are pushing us the other way. They are also pushing us to stop driving our guzzlers in favor of more efficient vehicles so we are saving the use of fuel in two ways.

But.... whatever we save is dwarfed by the continual growth in India and Asia. They will suck up whatever we save and more. As their economies move out of the 19th Century, more and more of them will want what we have today.......and together there's more then 10 x as many of them as there are of us.

It's ironic that the more we save the more we help them to grow. If we kept using more and more fuel we'd starve them economically. We'd also go broke ourselves.
Good answer. Sometimes people forget that we're not the only users of petrol.
 

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We've certainly reduced our amount of driving drastically. I already didn't drive a lot (22,500 miles on my car in 3 years 2 months) but it's even less so now. Same goes for my partner, he has eliminated his trips to the flea market and other things he used to enjoy.
 
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