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August 4, 2008 | by  | in Opinion | [ssba]

Poppa Petrol

Petrol prices are through the roof and rising. Many fingers are pointing at the oil companies, labelling them selfish, profithungry wankers. The oil companies may be the ones pulling the strings but their puppeteer antics are from altruistic motives.

With petrol prices as high as they are, we are beginning to rethink our consumption habits. The oil companies recognise that when we choose to use less petrol because we cannot afford it, we are decreasing our carbon footprint. By making the situation damn near impossible, Mother Nature is finally getting the relief we would not consciously give her if we had the choice.

But the Big Cheeses of the oil world’s master plans go further than this. The never ending rise of petrol prices is actually part of the grand design to help our economies. The popular solution to spending money filling up your car is to use public transport. And what does an increase in the demand for public transport lead to? More jobs. Unemployment is up there on the ‘how we know the world is turning to crap’ list, so creating jobs that will be of vital importance makes a lot of sense.

It is also an attempt to force local governments and organisations to get their arses into gear. Everybody works best under pressure because they don’t have any other options. If you were to apply enough pressure – like outrageous petrol prices – you might get some results. Maybe, just maybe, the local council will step up and put some effort into giving Wellington a reliable, updated and accessible public transport system. That elusive term ‘efficiency’ might actually become an identifiable practise.

But we need only try to catch the 11:44am bus from the top of Willis Street to know this ingenious plan hasn’t really met its full potential. I am sufficiently too out of pocket to drive – however my bus does not seem to exist. While I wait for the pieces to come together, petrol prices making me use public transport can just provide a feasible excuse for my being late to work.


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