National Dump the Pump Day
Thursday, June 21, 2012
The 7th annual National Dump the Pump Day on June 21 is a day to highlight that when gas prices are high, using public transportation is a great alternative to driving that will help people save money.
We know what happens when gas prices are high. Many people park their cars and take public transportation instead. In fact, using public transportation is an economical way to beat high gas prices…if it is available. According to APTA’s most recent Transit Saving Report, a two-person household can save, on the average, more than $10,000 a year by downsizing to one car.
At a time when our economy is still hurting and gas prices are continuing to skyrocket, people need to save money. This is a time to increase public transportation service, not decrease it. However, Congress has yet to pass a long overdue surface transportation bill that will increase public transportation investment. State and local revenues that fund public transportation have declined since the economic recession started and that has also negatively impacted public transit systems’ budgets. All levels of government – federal, state, and local – should invest more in public transportation.
From urban to suburban to rural communities, public transportation is a vital resource to Americans, and a cornerstone of our nation’s economy. Relying on transit for their daily mobility needs, Americans use local public transportation systems to commute to and from work, to travel to school and the doctor’s office, to go shopping, and to visit with family and friends. Public transportation use reduces our nation’s dependence on foreign oil by 4.2 billion gallons of gasoline a year and it also saves 37 million metric tons of carbon emissions annually. Last, but not least, public transportation has a proven track record of reducing congestion. The latest research shows that in 2010, U.S. public transportation use saved 796 million hours in travel time, 303 million gallons of fuel, and $17 billion in congestion costs in 439 urban areas.