In the past years, I adjusted my personal travel habits to be more ecological and sustainable. Now I decided to step up the game.
I already decided for some fundamental rules to my personal, 90,000+km / year, travel- and commuting habits:
- I don’t use any plane for distances short of 1,500km
- I travel mainly by car and by train
- When travelling by train, I use the 1st class and keep distance by booking single-seated options
My car has – for the past 12 years – always been a Diesel, with all modern cleaning technologies. I have used a BahnCard 50, which grants me 50% rebate of all inner-German travels via train, at least for what Deutsche Bahn covers. Since there is no such concept as peak- or offpeak-fares, this was very viable and it worked out once you had reached a spending of 500,– EUR per year.
After doing some research into feasibility and after wanting to improve upon my ecological footprint, I decided this as my plans for the next two years to be incorporated:
- I don’t fly within Europe at all
- My next car will be 100% electric
- Commuting to the office will be done with zero carbon local footprint only
- I will upgrade to a BahnCard 100 1st class
- I will use my bike for short distance commuting (up to ~25km each direction)
- I will just use a none-electrical car if it can not be circumvented
- I will add solar panels to my roof to produce energy locally
The goal is to reduce my car-bound travels from roughly 70,000km in 2019 to appr. 35,000km in 2021. I shall use a car only for travelling, when there is no appropriate train connection available, or when I have to carry heavy or bulky luggage. All other trips can be done by train, given the health situation allows for it.
The most challenging aspect will be the switch to a fully electrical car, since I expect a minimum of 500km of range – not on paper, but in real-life situations, such as when driving on an Autobahn with 130km/h.
I understand currently only some Tesla Models matching these requirements – all of the German engineered cars may have such a range on paper, but not in real life. On the other hand, it will be very rewarding – I anyhow used 100% renewable energy for the past 10 years, I am planning to add some solar panels to my house’s roof, ideally resulting in being able to sustain my local travels from my own energy sources and circumventing charging points for most of the time.
So, my new travel habits will be more:
- More sustainable
- More ecological
- More healthy
To me, this is the right way to go, even if it is more expensive then continuing with the traditional approaches.
What do you think?