Energy efficiency General Ride The Talk

3 Things you might not know:

1.       Australians create more GHG per capita than anyone else in the developed world

2.       Burning coal releases mercury, selenium and arsenic as well as uranium, thorium and other heavy metals – if a health impact study were done today, it would probably not be allowed.

(If your reason for avoiding Compact Fluorescent Lights (CFLs) is that of the mercury contained therein, then use CFLs as the extra coal burnt to provide the energy to light standard globes releases more mercury than the CFL bulbs contain.)

3.       The effective work done by the average car in transporting YOU from A to B is less than 2.5% efficient


1 occupant per car weighing                        <= 100kg (take worst-case 100kg)

Vehicle weight                                           >= 1000kg (take best-case 1000kg)

Maximum Efficiency of ICE/drivetrain (optimal)                 <25%

With these assumptions the efficiency of moving a person from A to B would (as a maximum) be an order of magnitude less than the vehicle efficiency (100kg/1000kg) i.e. < 2.5%

(N.B. These figures are very rough and ready but useful for indicating efficiencies.)

Moral: to get best efficiency when using your car, consider car pooling at the least and combine many trips into one.

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