We've Got Issues

Most die-hard environmentalist live their lives by the slogan: "Go green!" They work vigorously towards restoring the environment by buying anything that has the term "eco-friendly" involved. To top it off, they drive a hybrid car because "it's safer for the environment."

Unfortunately, the harsh reality in life is that everything isn't as sugar coated as its marketed. The fact is, the cost and pollution levels of these "eco-friendly" vehicles are much higher than your average conventional car.

With the up rise in eco-friendly products, most consumers think the key to life is living "green." In recent times, the majority of automotive manufacturers have each made their own version of the "eco-friendly" car.

Most manufacturers are aware that it doesn't take much to sell hybrid cars. Advertising only requires a mention of the small saving to consumers and two key words: "green" and "new." What the manufacturers fail to relay in their messages is that these "eco-friendly" cars are causing long-term damage.

 These "eco-minded" consumers should be more aware of what a hybrid car really consists of before they start emptying out their wallets. Hybrid cars are usually defined as a vehicle that uses two or more sources of power for propulsion. This often refers to a hybrid electric vehicle (HEV), which relies on both an electric motor and an internal combustion engine, which is mostly done in an effort to achieve greater fuel efficiency. However, consumers usually don't know what this means or why they are paying top dollar for it.

When consumers purchase hybrid cars they are often mislead by the commercial hype or possible ideology of "well, everyone else is doing it." However, it seems that they aren't doing proper research on these vehicles, just going out and buying whichever ones fits their personality. In the end a person's personality is not going to be the key to saving our environment, however, research and thought will be.

Most hybrid cars emit more carbon dioxide than the average fuel-engine car, which in return hurts the o-zone layer, as opposed to saving it.

Recently there has been constant debate about whether hybrid cars are more efficient than fuel-engine vehicles. Each side of the argument has its ups and down's, hybrids save money on gas, allows the drivers to drive in carpool lanes, and especially cuts down pollution levels emitted from driving.

On the other hand the price of hybrid cars can actually end up being more expensive to buy than conventional cars. In addition, certain hybrid cars have metal hydride batteries, which are expensive. This fact has some owners worried about how long the battery will last and whether or not these batteries are eco-friendly.  Another issue arises with the hybrid manufacturers.

With most arguments both sides are semi-accurate, as in both sides tell you only a part of the truth but not the entire truth. It is funny to realize that the same people that are passionate in their attempt to restore our planet to its pre-industrial conditions are the same people that are contributing to our ecosystems demise due to their hunger for these hybrid cars.

The argument that environmentalists usually use in their defense is the comparison of conventional cars and big SUV's polluting the environment. It is a known fact that cars emit gasses such as carbon dioxide, which is considered a "greenhouse gas". It absorbs the sun's radiation and reemits it as heat, which in turn warms up the planet.

While it is an issue that should be dealt with, environmentalist shouldn't blame pollution solely on these cars without first doing research on their own cars.

The bottom line is, when you buy a hybrid, you lose, if you buy a conventional car you lose. However, if you insist on getting a hybrid car please do the proper research before purchasing your next eco-friendly vehicle because it might not be the best decision.