Fuel efficiency practices likely motivated by finances, not environment

One of the biggest obstacles facing green energy and environmental advocacy groups is the task of inciting consumers to adopt sustainable practices despite economic impracticality.

One of the biggest obstacles facing green energy and environmental advocacy groups is the task of inciting consumers to adopt sustainable practices despite economic impracticality.

In recent years, however, an emergence of green technologies is beginning to fashion environmental concerns into a similarly economical one.

A survey released this week by PEMCO Insurance found drivers in the Northwest claim their fuel-efficiency practices are motivated more so by finances than helping the environment.

Roughly 90 percent of drivers in the region of Washington and Portland, Oregon, put some effort into fuel efficiency, but far fewer do so to reduce their impact on the environment.

"We were surprised to learn that even in the Pacific Northwest, where we have a reputation for being environmentally conscientious, cost still trumps being green," said PEMCO spokesperson Jon Osterberg. "And with gas prices at record highs in some areas, drivers are certainly feeling the pinch."

However, when gas prices begin to slide, many analysts expect the urgency to adopt fuel efficiency practices may slide as well. But with gas prices averaging upwards of $3.50 per gallon throughout the country, that may take some time.