Schwarzenegger Jumps on Obama’s ‘Proper Tire Inflation’ Bandwagon
Gov. distances himself from what Obama called GOP ‘ignorance’
Two weeks ago, the presumptive Democratic candidate for President of the United States, Barack Obama had the gall to suggest that proper tire inflation could actually reduce national gasoline consumption, thereby lowering our carbon emissions and reducing our demand for oil.
GOP strategists saw an opportunity to pounce on this bold claim by Senator Obama. And they, along with their friend Rush Limbaugh, lampooned and ridiculed Obama’s tire pressure assertion as a joke. The McCain campaign even went so far as handing out tire gauges branded with the slogan “Obama’s Energy Plan” to reporters traveling with Senator Obama. Let me just say this, whomever was in charge of that “brilliant” move at McCain HQ should be canned.
Today several more groups were added to the growing list of organizations that stand behind Senator Obama’s claim that properly inflated tires can indeed reduce gasoline consumption. Speaking on behalf of these groups, and helping to launch the EcoDriving initiative were the Republican Governor of California Arnold Schwarzenegger, and the Democratic Governor of Colorado Bill Ritter.
The pair were on hand in Denver on Monday (Schwarzenegger spoke via satellite link) to announce a new initiative from the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers and the American Automobile Dealers Association called EcoDriving (EcoDrivingUSA.com), a comprehensive, nationwide effort to save consumers money at the gas pump, reduce fuel use and cut carbon dioxide emissions. The Environmental Defense Fund also participated in the launch.
By following a set of subtle and easy-to-use best practices, including proper tire inflation, for driving and vehicle maintenance, the group says a typical driver can improve mileage by about 15 percent. In addition, officials at EcoDriving claim that if just half of all drivers nationwide practiced moderate levels of EcoDriving, annual CO2 emissions could be reduced by about 100 million tons, or the equivalent of heating and powering 8.5 million households.
As part of their national campaign, automakers pledged to reach out to government, business, educators and more. Alliance members hope to engage all 50 states, as well as major consumer organizations, in EcoDriving. “We’re all in this together, so there’s a role for each one of us to play in being a part of the solution to these critical issues,” said said Dave McCurdy, president and CEO of the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers.
“Automakers are aggressively developing and introducing new technologies, but it takes 15 years or more for these technologies to become widespread on the road. EcoDriving helps consumers reduce carbon dioxide emissions today,” said McCurdy.
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Photo: Clemson via flickr under a Creative Commons License