Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Oil: a market response?

As oil and gasoline prices rise, I've been waiting to see how the free market might react. Simplistic economics would suggest that demand would decrease as prices rise, but the roads seem as full as ever, although there are stories about scooters, hybrids, and biodiesel alternatives.

The local paper ran an editorial today encouraging the use of mass transit and noting that "Snohomish County's Community Transit has hundreds of unofficial billboards posted across the county - at every gas station. With prices breaching $3 per gallon, there is no better advertisement for mass transit."

For the past several years, I've increasingly walked or used the bus to get where I need to go. I did initially feel inconvenienced at having to look up bus schedules and get to the bus stop on time. That quickly gave way to a perception of increased convenience, as I got out in the fresh air more, didn't have to worry about traffic congestion, and could read while I rode. Besides, the economics clearly favored the bus: the $2.50 fare to Seattle wouldn't buy the gallon of gas I'd probably use, and I'd still have to pay for wear and tear on the car and for parking in the city.

If you haven't used mass transit in a while, give it a try! If you're in another part of the world, check out what mass transit offers there!

1 Comments:

Blogger Lumpy said...

I agree.

I bus or bike frequently, it is time well spent using my ipaq to read feeds or listen to podcasts.

Everytime I pass a gas station, I feel even more so that it is time well spent.

31 October, 2005 00:14  

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