Planning a road trip to kiss summer goodbye? Why not make it a green road trip?
Green Road Trip
Getting out of town is a tradition for many this time of year. As we take steps to live a greener life, we must not forget these new tricks when we leave our daily grind. Vacation is not an excuse for a relapse! As always, we need to take a few minutes to devise a game plan to live green. As you plan your trip, consider how to make it green too.
Keep it Close to Home
A road trip is typically a short trip due to the time it takes to travel versus time to enjoy the destination. This time limitation is a benefit to the environment too because the less you drive, the less exhaust produced and gas burned! It saves you money too! So the first suggestion is to find a location that is relatively near to home.
Look for Pedestrian-Friendly Destinations
In some cities you could just hop a train to take a short trip, but in Nashville you pretty much have to leave town by car. However, you can choose a destination that is walkable, is bike friendly or has a public transportation system that you can use to get around once you get there. Park your car and relax!
Don’t Guzzle! Take it Slow…
Choose a fuel-efficient car for the trip and save money on gas and reduce emissions into the environment. Consider taking roads with a speed limit at or near 55 miles per hour to burn fuel at peak efficiency for your car. If you drive a hybrid car consider taking roads that go through towns to recharge your battery at stop signs or signaled intersections. These small towns will provide opportunities to rest and relax along the way. Experience the culture of the town by patronizing little diners and local shops! Make the journey part of the adventure of the road trip!
When you pack your supplies for the trip, remember to plan for reuse. Buy reuseable water containers and coffee travel mugs for your daily liquids. Consider water-tight containers to keep food fresh, sealed and storable in a cooler. Pack snacks that are nutritious, have little or no packaging and travel easily with little or no risk of damage. Chips and soft fruits are tasty, but are prone to an early demise on a road trip! Victim of close quarters! Crack, crush and crumble! Choose pretzels, seeds, nuts and dried fruit. Sounds like trail mix! Ah, there is wisdom in this custom!
Waste Not, Recycle Always!
Make a game plan to recycle. First minimize the things that will need to be recycled by reducing waste and choosing items that can be reused. Make choices that can be recycled where you are going. For example, choose aluminum canned beverages instead of glass because they are lighter, take up less room in the car and are more likely to be collected for recycling from town to town. Once you have selected your destination, research where to recycle and plan your deposits so you don’t have to haul it all home. For example, if you are going to drive to Birmingham, look up the city’s public works website and find out how to recycle in that town. If you are going to stay in a state park, find out what recyclables are collected on site. If the information isn’t on the website, call and ask… maybe the inquiry will provoke them to publicize their recycling programs to future tourists! Little things like this often make change happen!