NaNcY's SUV Rant!

I've always found it humorous to see people driving their big SUVs & giant pick up trucks back and forth to work or parked at the grocery store. I doubted these vehicles ever saw a dirt road, or had been driven off road. I began to find them more annoying as they started to hog more and more of the road and parking spaces. After I began researching SUVs on-line, my annoyance and humor has turned to anger & disgust.

There was a time when the United States made it policy to work towards vehicles that used less fuel and polluted less. There were government standards that had to be met, and American car manufactories had to build better cars. Somewhere along the way we lost sight and allowed our selfishness & egos get in the way of doing the right thing. The United States Congress allowed lower fuel standards for SUVs, and we found ourselves watching more and more TV ads showing us that we would be cooler, smarter, sexier, more powerful if we just had that gas guzzling SUV that could drive over anything!

The summer of 2003 was the hottest and driest my state has had in a long, long time. We go through periodic droughts & hot summers, but in my over five decades of living in New Mexico, I can't remember a hotter summer with over 100-degree days in Albuquerque lasting more than a week, let alone a month. The summer of 2007 has been a revisit of the 2003 summer, especially in Europe. Some areas have had record heat. Again in 2011, the Southern States of the United States suffer from a wave of new record setting temperatures.

In the past decade there have been a noticeable changes in weather patters in New Mexico. We usually gets the most rainfall between July & September. We now get more precipitation in the autumn months rather than the summer months. The changing weather pattern should be of concern to us all since many scientists see this as a sign of global warming.

The strongest evidence of global warming is the shirking polar ice caps. Scientists have found that the temperature in the Arctic region has increased in the last century. The immediate effect of this temperature change has been that both ice in the ocean & glaciers have been receding. The decrease of polar ice in the sea will mean the rest of the earth will have increases in temperature as well. The receding glaciers have already resulted in rising seas levels.

Global Warming is real, and the United States holds more responsibility for causing Global warming than any other country in the world. Although we have only 5% of the population in the U.S., we cause over 23% of the global greenhouse gases. As I get older, and learn more about my genealogy & the science of human genetics, the more I realize that the people of the earth are truly one big global family whose home is the earth. We all share a responsibility to our family to make our home a decent place to live.

. I have to ask everybody who drives an SUV "does it bother you that your vehicle is doing more than it's share to destroy the earth?" You might say that safety is more important, and do I have news for you. It has been shown again and again that SUVs are not as safe as passenger cars. For people who might be standing near them, or driving near them, SUVs are even less safe. How safe is a vehicle that adds pollutants that will worsen everyone's, including your child's or grandchild's asthma? Lets face it, how many people really bought into the auto industry's push to sell SUVs as cool, sophisticated, individual, or some how special? But how cool, special or sophisticated is it to drive a vehicle that has the potential to harm the earth while being unsafe?

I have links below that back up what I've said, and provide information on SUVs and Global Warming. I also included links to sites that provide information on just how well, or poorly, your SUV is in adding pollutants to the air, and what it's fuel efficiency is. There are even some smaller SUVs on these lists that excel in both categories. I hope you will take time to look at these links, and take some time to think about what we all can do to make the earth a better place for us all to live in.

The Sock Test: Try this out!

Attach a white tube sock onto the tail pipe of a regular passenger car and drive around for 20 minutes.

Next, do the same for an SUV.

You'll see a big difference in the discoloration of the sock... this is a great learning tool for both kids (in a classroom environment) as well as for SUV owners...

Links to ponder and links that opened my eyes:

SUVs & the Environment

Movement to Ban SUVs Concerns

SUV Report - Global Warming by the Sierra Club

Reversing the Tide of Trucks and SUVs from Sustainable Enterprises

From the Environmental Defense, How Much Does Your Dream Car Pollute?

Vehicle Facts

From the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency rating of SUVs in Emissions/Air Pollution & Fuel Economy/Global Warming

Union of Concerned Scientists site, The Environmental Performance of Car Companies

Fuel Economy from the government has information on how cars rate in fuel economy and pollution plus other articles of how to improve your fuel economy.

Tailpipe Tally: How Much Does Your Vehicle Pollute?


Sport Utility Vehicles Pose a Danger to All, from The Center for Auto Safety

The Bully on the Block, from Salon about sport utility vehicles taking an ever greater toll on smaller cars, and killing the people who drive them.

From PBS's Frontline Rollover, the Hidden History the SUV

Other People's Rants

Bumper Mentality A review of Keith Bradsher's High and Mighty: SUVs by Stephanie Mencimer

Amazon books: High & Mighty: SUVs--The World's Most Dangerous Vehicles and How They Got That Way


Earth on Empty National anti-SUV Ticket Campaign

Global Warming

For the on going & latest research on Global Warming visit the US Global Change Research Program Evidence of Global Warming

EPA Global Warming Site - Check out "Where You Live," and find out how Global Warming is effecting your area of the world.

From National Geographic, Signs From The Earth

Glaciers and Global Warming - What would happen to the world's coastlines if the West Antarctic Ice Sheet melted, raising global sea levels by as much as 20 feet?

Arctic Sea Ice Shrinking, Greenland Ice Sheet Melting, According to Study

National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC)

Fact Sheet: Global Warming and Climate Change from (PDF file)

From NASA's Earth Observatory, FAQ about Global Warming Fact Sheet: Global Warming: The History of an International Scientific Consensus from file)

World View of Global Warming with photographic proof of Global Warming

New Documentation: Global Warming in world's largest and smallest nations

From BBC: In pictures: How the world is changing

Worldwatch News Brief- Melting of Earth's Ice Cover Reaches New High

From Scientific American: Is Global Warming Harmful to Health?

Global Warming: Early Warning Signs

Effects of Global Warming from National Geographic

Ocean and Climate Change Institute - Abrupt Climate Change

Climate Ark - Climate Change Portal- Grim Signs Mark Global Warming

Global Warming The 'Greenhouse Effect'

From the BBC: Animated Guide on How the Green House Works

From National Geographic: By 2050 Warming to Doom Million Species, Study Says

Global Warming Threatens Species

Climate fear for African elephant

A Warm Unwelcome, Seabirds suffer as climate change unravels North Sea food web

Effects of global warming already being felt on plants and animals worldwide

Global Warming Said Devastating Aquatic Ecosystems

Global Warming Being Felt On Plants And Animals Worldwide

Global Warming News from Science Daily

The Pew Center on Global Climate Change has articles about the most recent affects of global warming.

More on Causes of Global Warming

Causes of Global Warming from National Geographic

The Major Human Causes Of Climate Change

Causes of Global Climate Change from NASA

Human Global Warming: What are the Main Causes?

My Newest Rant

Eat Less Meat to Cut Back on Global Warming

Rearing cattle produces more greenhouse gases than driving cars, UN report warns

Global Warming and Pasture-Raised Beef Production in the U.S. from the Union of Concerned Scientists

Livestock generates over half of worldwide greenhouse gas emissions - Worldwatch Report

Our Livestock Industry Creates More Greenhouse Gas than Transportation Does

How Meat Contributes to Global Warming From Scientific American Site map
NaNcY's HoMe PaGe