Monday, September 26, 2005

This summer I took the intro class of urban planning and learnt there about other cities all over the world and how they deal with transportation and compactness, high population densities. Taiwan, with a gas price of $10 per gallon has a thought out mass transportation system, with other means to get around besides a car. At what price will Americans stop driving there vehicles? Using up our resources at such a fast pace makes me think we should increase the price in order for future generations.


At 10:48 AM, Blogger Tim Maddog said...


Who told you gasoline was "$10 per gallon" in Taiwan?

I can tell you that as of just yesterday, the price of gas here was NT$25.2 (i.e., 25.2 New Taiwan dollars) per liter. Multiplying by 3.87 liters/gallon gives a figure of NT$97.524/gallon. The current exchange rate of US$1 = NT$33.2850 puts the price of gas in Taiwan at less than US$3/gallon -- US$2.92996, to be more precise.

Also, not every part of Taiwan has a "thought out mass transportation system." Only Taipei (the capital) has an MRT, and you can feel yourself growing old while waiting for the bus in many other places.

Lots of people here use scooters, but the benefits gained in mileage are probably more than offset by the great deal of pollution they generate. I prefer to use my bicycle to get to work every day. I stopped driving when gas was still below US$1/gallon, but the price of gas wasn't the main factor.

I don't think price will be the deciding factor for getting anybody else to give up their pollution-machines either. That won't happen until people are paying $10/liter of oxygen to breathe -- and by then, it'll be way too late (if it isn't already). No, people really have to look much more closely at what it really costs -- in terms of natural resources, pollution, and people's lives -- to get from one place to another. The question is, when putting it in those terms, how much are people willing to "pay"?

At 8:09 PM, Blogger Jaimie said...

thanks for the heads up about the prices, i appreciate the straight forwardness. i should check my sources.

At 1:18 PM, Blogger Tim Maddog said...

Since you didn't answer the question I put at the very beginning of my first comment, I will repeat it, with added emphasis:

Who told you gasoline was "$10 per gallon" in Taiwan?

I would assume it was a university professor, or at least, an instructor. If I'm right, you should point out the mistake to them and ask where the information came from. In other words, you should check your source's source, too.


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