2009 FACT BOOK PREVIEW: LCT Magazine is busy compiling and organizing the results of its annual Fact Book survey, and as usual, a few results defy conventional wisdom. Out of 11 issues that concern operators, guess which one ranked dead last? Green/sustainability programs.
Despite all the coverage of green issues, all the hype and promotion about green techniques, all the emphasis on green vehicles. . . operators aren't too worked up over them. There are numerous ways to interpret this: souring economy puts green issues on the back burner; the public is burned out over global warming drama and hysteria; cap and trade schemes spook the business sector; green vehicles are still too expensive; lower gas costs have taken the urgency out of going green; or, just maybe, a chilling truth is crystallizing like a thickening sheet of ice.
The No. 1 operator concern? Fuel costs. After the speculative fuel price horror of 2008, that is no surprise. So what is the connection between the first and last concerns of operators? Who knows, but maybe a good plan of action for now is for the U.S. to find more sources of oil AND vigorously pursue the development of green luxury vehicles that save on gas. -- M.R.
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