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Energy Tip #18: Follow the speed limit

speeding.gifFrom James Dean to The Fast and the Furious to Herbie Goes Bananas, racing has long been an iconic Hollywood staple in which the ‘pedal to the metal’ mentality is consistently glorified. However, if you like to leave fellow drivers in you wake, you might be interested in knowing that you can save $17-67 (plus a few hundred bucks in speeding tickets) by simply obeying the rules of the road. Going above the speed limit, particularly at the higher end of the spectrum, will drastically reduce your fuel efficiency.

Speeding causes extra air resistance on the vehicle and speeds above 60 mph can especially be a drag. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that for the every 5 mph above 60, the decreased fuel efficiency is the equivalent of paying a $0.20 surcharge on each gallon. The costs can quickly add up.

Let’s take a look at the numbers…

Avg. MPG: 19.6
Avg. MPG above the speed limit: 15.1 – 18.2
Avg. miles/yr. above speed limit (est.): 2,000
Increased gallons of gasoline used: 7.8 – 30.4
$ saved by not speeding: $17 – 67
CO2 saved by not speeding: 152 – 590 lbs

Last week 151 people pledged to wash and rinse in cold water (Tip #17). At 1,281 lbs of CO2 per pledge, voters reduced a very healthy 193,431 lbs of CO2. This is a fairly easy tip, and one that can be passed along to receptive friends.

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