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The Fuel Protests

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Its 10 years since the fuel protests that brought the UK to a halt. It was extraordinary to see vehicles queueing to get the last litres of petrol available, panic buying, the roads becoming increasingly quiet.

Certainly, a week that has lived in the memory

http://news.bbc.co.uk/onthisday/hi/dates/stories/september/8/newsid_2503000/2503119.stm

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Now with prices so much higher (even by today's comparative standards) everyone just accepts the weekly rises? Where are they now?

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It (fuel prices being 'allegedly' too high) has done nothing to curb speeding, though???

Oh I dont know, it has made the 'poorer' and the retired drive slower, the speeders are still your mercs, BWM, Lexus etc drivers and if you own one of those then you generally arent going to worry about petrol going up a few pence every couple of months. I have noticed as well the motorways seem increasing dual speed 50-60mph group and the 80+mph group.

The fuel protests worked then because the government got caught with its pants well and truely down, now they have got steps in place to deal with it much more quickly and so it would be less effective. Rolling road blocks would be more effective and harder to prevent.

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I loved the fuel protests in 2000. Had an old Escort at the time which ran on 4 star so I just filled up at around 1am on the 3rd day of the protests. It lasted well into the following week...

I was amongst the few drivers still using the roads. Loved the lack of traffic and no rush hour at all. I think even Sheffield saw something like a 30% drop in pollution as a result.

Goes to show, take the cars away and we might get a proper winter..... :nonono:

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I think it's feasible to argue that they were mainly protesting about the wrong thing. I may be against most deterrents to car use but I see high fuel prices as a necessary evil in the long run, as a wake-up call over sustainability, because even if AGW doesn't "get us" it's only a matter of time before oil reserves dwindle and prices shoot up accordingly. The problem is that when rising fuel costs are not accompanied by incentivising/subsidising of cleaner alternatives (more eco-friendly cars, better public transport to workplaces, more ability to work from home etc) it's a case of "all stick and no carrot", and it has serious knock-on effects (passing increased business costs to the consumer, increasing bus fares due to making buses more expensive to run). Really, that should've been the emphasis of the protesters.

Re. speeding, while as a general rule slower speeds save fuel there are exceptions, due to the average car using its fuel most efficiently at a consistent speed of around 40mph, plus lower speeds meaning longer journey times which, unless it's accompanied by a compensatory fall in car use, increases volume of traffic. I read somewhere that car manufacturers may be able to "tweak" the area of peak fuel efficiency to make 20mph more fuel-efficient than 40mph, but as yet they haven't.

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Wow was it really 10 years ago???.. i remember a garage getting some fuel and jacking the price sky high :nonono: ..needless to say when it was over most drivers boycotted that garage and he went out of business

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I think it's feasible to argue that they were mainly protesting about the wrong thing. I may be against most deterrents to car use but I see high fuel prices as a necessary evil in the long run, as a wake-up call over sustainability, because even if AGW doesn't "get us" it's only a matter of time before oil reserves dwindle and prices shoot up accordingly. The problem is that when rising fuel costs are not accompanied by incentivising/subsidising of cleaner alternatives (more eco-friendly cars, better public transport to workplaces, more ability to work from home etc) it's a case of "all stick and no carrot", and it has serious knock-on effects (passing increased business costs to the consumer, increasing bus fares due to making buses more expensive to run). Really, that should've been the emphasis of the protesters.

Re. speeding, while as a general rule slower speeds save fuel there are exceptions, due to the average car using its fuel most efficiently at a consistent speed of around 40mph, plus lower speeds meaning longer journey times which, unless it's accompanied by a compensatory fall in car use, increases volume of traffic. I read somewhere that car manufacturers may be able to "tweak" the area of peak fuel efficiency to make 20mph more fuel-efficient than 40mph, but as yet they haven't.

Very well put, Ian.

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