I have heard other people recently talk about conserving gas in terms of the greater good. Buying that Prius is a noble thing to do for the world. It sounds on Ok on the surface but I got to thinking about it. What if every American cut gas usage by 30%? That would drop the price of gasoline and spur more use of it in China, India, and elsewhere where usage is going up rapidly. Also, we are going to use all of the gas available anyway within our lifetimes (actually, that isn’t true because we have enough coal to make gasoline for a very long time but that complicates the issue somewhat). The pollution and other problems associated with gasoline use and production are going to released at some point in the near future whether we like it or not.
Is saving gas now really a good strategy or just a feel-good measure with minimal impact? I will preempt arguments at the extreme end and say that I am talking about modest to moderate savings in gasoline per person.