How much oil do we burn?

The things you'll find wandering around the Web--

I was researching pedicabs (aka the cycle rickshaw, according to Wikipedia) for a piece I'm writing for MetroSpokane, my favorite blog on urban design issues in and around Spokane (which it was before I started writing an occasional bike-related item for them).

The search led me to Main Street Pedicabs, which has a nifty little oil consumption clock on its web site. I tried to get the code to load onto my blog page to become a gadget in the sidebar or the footer (it's available at Energy & Capital).

But I couldn't poke it into the HTML for the blog without either blowing it up, or seeing no difference whatsoever. So here it is below just to capture it somewhere.

As a bike commuter, I may not be contributing quite as much to the speed of the ticker on this clock as someone tooling down the road in a Hummer (obviously someone who believes it's essential to own an urban assault vehicle).

But it still requires fuel to create and bring me things that contribute to the cushy life I lead as an American, from the laptop on which I'm writing this to the vanilla soymilk on my evening snack of Indian carrot pudding (and for that matter, the cardamom and almonds in the pudding--I'm sure they weren't grown around here, nor was the brown sugar--but dang, is it ever good).

When I saw An Inconvenient Truth, I was pleased that I was already doing a number of the things listed at the end as ways to take action. But I wasn't doing all of them. I'm still not. Time to get on that. As the clock shows, there's not a moment (or barrel) to waste.

Learn more about Peak Oil at

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