Featured Articles

Zipcar Provides Drastic Emissions Reductions, Mobility For The Masses

Posted in auto industry, Cars, Emissions, Environment, Favorite Cars, Fuel-efficient, Newsworthy, People, Popular Cars, Traffic, Travel by Suzanne Denbow | October 14th, 2009 | 3 Responses |


Who knew a lifestyle that necessitates surviving almost exclusively on a diet of Ramen noodles and Natural Ice could prove so beneficial to the environment? According to Zipcar, their rideshare programs that currently dot an estimated 140 university campuses across the U.S. and Great Britian are succeeding in astronomically reducing emissions, and all thanks to the overwhelming response from college kids too broke to spring for their own set of wheels. By the numbers, Zipcar estimates they’ve cut CO2 emissions by 56 million pounds annually, which is roughly equivalent to the amount of CO2 that would be emitted by 4,800 dilapidated Honda Accords with Greek and/or obscure band bumper stickers affixed atop the more noticeable dents.

In addition to the significant environmental benefits, Zipcar’s service has also done wonders for solving many of the congestion problems plaguing certain campuses and university officials laud the program with praise. “I cannot say enough about our partnership with Zipcar; their commitment to innovation, marketing, and customer service has allowed us to create the type of brand awareness and customer loyalty that students identify with and respect,” said Tony Mazza, Director of Transportation for the University of Southern California (USC). “With over 20 cars and approximately 1000 members on campus – we are dedicated to continue growing our car-sharing program until our parking demand and environmental goals have been realized.”

With several major colleges, including 7 of the Pac 10, nearly half of the Big 10, half the Ivy Leagues, and the majority of NESCAC schools, now partnering with Zipcar, the company is confident interest will continue to grow and eventually launch Zipcar’s membership total into the millions.

“The demand for Zipcar at universities is being driven by a unique combination of university initiative and student demand. Increasingly, universities are under pressure to address parking and congestion issues, while also controlling costs and delivering on sustainability initiatives,” said Scott Griffith, Chairman and CEO of Zipcar. “Universities acknowledge Zipcar as a convenient cost savings and carbon reduction solution. Zipcar provides students the freedom of car ownership – enhancing campus life by offering the ability to get off campus for errands, entertainment or road trips – without the associated cost and hassle of owning a car. More and more student assemblies and student governments are demanding that their campuses offer Zipcar.”

We, on the other hand, would just like to be able to travel 20 yards in any direction in Center City Philadelphia without encountering a Zipcar that has been illegally or otherwise incorrectly parked outside of health food/record/thrift store.

Source: PR Newswire

Our Best Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

3 Responses

  1. Dustin May says:

    How on earth do they estimate the reduction in CO2 emissions? Do they assume that for every renter, they’ve taken a car off the road?

    Is it not possible that if Zipcar didn’t exist, that renter would not have driven, but instead would have walked or ridden a bike?

    I don’t understand their claim. Maybe I’m dumb, but I’m tired of companies saying they’ve “save xx lb. of CO2″ but don’t say what their baseline is, or, worse, set a ridiculously high baseline.

  2. Mike the Dog says:

    I’m having sniff-test issues with this one, too. “According to Zipcar, their rideshare programs … are succeeding in astronomically reducing emissions, and all thanks to the overwhelming response from college kids too broke to spring for their own set of wheels.” How does providing somebody (who otherwise wouldn’t have access to a car) with access to a car (that would be sitting undriven, if that person didn’t have access to it) reduce overall emissions? If that person would have otherwise taken the bus, that’s one less person on that bus (which isn’t going to stop running because one less person is using it) which actually raises the emissions from the bus on a per-person basis (a clever trick used by statisticians to make huge inefficient vehicles seem more “green” [yes, it’s a hulking monster that gets 8mpg, but it holds eight people so it gets 64mpg per person! That’s better than a Prius with just a driver!]). It seems to me that someone at Zipcar is either fudging numbers, not using good methods, or just plain making stuff up.

  3. Mike the Dog says:

    As for the parking thing, if the city made a policy of just towing these shared cars instead of wasting everybody’s time by ticketing them, the people who had them out would quickly (and expensively, too at $8/hour plus impound fees) learn not to park like an ass.

    As an aside, why no link to your source or the ipcar website? Just axin’…