An English major crunches some numbers.
I just got done telling you about the world’s bounty of gentle souls who sweat and toil and cheerlead for the car-free movement.
So, maybe you’re wondering exactly how many car-free people there are.
I’m wondering too. Plus, with all the census hoopla these days, I’ve built up an appetite for some number-crunching myself. Turns out, for the U.S. at least, someone has already crunched the numbers for me:
There are 107 million U.S. households, each with an average of 1.9 cars, trucks, or sport utility vehicles and 1.8 drivers, the Bureau of Transportation Statistics reported. That equals 204 million vehicles and 191 million drivers.
– from Leslie Miller’s “Cars, trucks now outnumber drivers,” Salon, 2003
Uh-oh, does that mean that we don’t exist?
Let’s try this again:
- U.S. Population: 309 million (from U.S. Census Bureau)
- Number of passenger vehicles in U.S.: 254 million (from U.S. Department of Transportation)
That means there must be at least 55 million of us without a car.
And when you account for the super-rich and/or car-obsessed people who own more than just one car, there are probably even more of us. Then, of course, there are the many, many people who own a car but still support the car-free movement in myriad ways—being “car-lite,” volunteering for or donating to alternative transportation organizations, and giving us car-free folks rides. It’s pretty tough to gather information about our diverse community, isn’t it?
Hey, why don’t we have our own little No Car Go census!
Post your answers to the following questions in a comment (Note: U.S. residency not required for participation in NCG Census.):
- Do you own a car? (If “No,” skip to question 3.)
- If you own a car, approximately how many miles a week do you drive it? (Skip to question 4.)
- If you do not own a car, what is your primary mode(s) of transportation?
- Which aspect of the car-free movement concerns you? (Select all that apply.)
a. Energy and environment
b. Community design and landscape
c. Health and fitness
Only four questions and no postage required. I ought to get into census-writing.