23 July 2008

Two Roads Diverged in the Wood

I don't have many options when it comes to my daily commute.

I drive because it's convenient, but I also have little other choice. I drop the kids at daycare every morning and then drive to my office which is in the next town. There is no bus route that will get me to work on time and I often have to travel to our two other offices at a moment's notice.

There are two ways I can drive, but I'm having a hard time deciding which is the best way to go - environmentally speaking.

Route #1: 7.5 miles, two quick traffic lights - roughly 10 minutes - mostly a straight shot - pleasant.

Route #2: 4.3 miles, 11 sometimes painful traffic lights - approximatley 15 minutes -sometimes longer depending on the lights. A few F-bombs have been known to be uttered before 8 AM.

Question: Does it make more sense to drive fewer miles but spend more time idling at traffic lights or go a few extra miles and only possibly stop twice? Or is it 6 of one... I know it's not a big difference but I want to do what's best even if it's small.

I've never been good at math.


noble pig said...

I beleive the longer commute would be better. Starting and stopping would consume more fuel than long easy stretches of road.

Maeve's Mom said...

Another vote for the longer one (mileage-wise). I think the shorter time, straight-shot is going to use less gas than the stop and go driving. Plus, anytime you can avoid the f-bomb that early in the morning it's better. I like to save mine for afternoon.

Jennifer said...

If the longer route saves your samity, it's worth the extra fossil fuel.

Plus, yeah, what noble pig and maeve's mom said, regarding the stopping and starting. ;)

She She said...

I vote for the longer route, too. The stopping ans starting burns a lot of fuel, is harder on your car, and will probably grate on your nerves.

Mama K said...

No question in my mind - take the longer, more peaceful and sane route. If by chance you do leave a slightly larger carbon footprint, anytime you conserve an F-bomb you're ahead of the game!