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Poor Gas Mileage Drives Down New Hampshire Energy Efficiency

PHOTO: New Hampshire ranks lower for car-related energy efficiency than several other states in New England and the Upper Midwest, but is doing much better in terms of home energy efficiency. Photo credit: Daniel Wilkinson, New Hampshire State Parks.
PHOTO: New Hampshire ranks lower for car-related energy efficiency than several other states in New England and the Upper Midwest, but is doing much better in terms of home energy efficiency. Photo credit: Daniel Wilkinson, New Hampshire State Parks.
October 14, 2014

CONCORD, N.H. - New Hampshire ranks low in a new nationwide report on car-related energy efficiency as to how far people drive each year, compared to how much gas they use to get to their destination.

Wallethub, a financial advice website, charts the annual progress of home and transportation energy efficiency on a state-by-state basis, and ranks states on how well they do. The report is released to coincide with National Energy Awareness Month throughout October.

Jill Gonzalez with Wallethub says when it comes to energy efficiency behind the wheel, New Hampshire was near the bottom, at 36th in the nation.

"New Hampshire consumed about 790 billion gallons of gas last year," says Gonzalez. "If you look at a state like Vermont, they consumed about 375 billion."

New Hampshire did far better in the category of home-related energy efficiency, coming in number five nationally. Overall, the state ranked 14th. Vermont lead both New England and the nation with the number one overall ranking.

Nationally, miles per gallon (MPG) numbers have risen significantly in recent years, but Gonzalez says some states - especially some western states with long commutes - have done a much better job of increasing fuel efficiency on the road.

"California and Colorado really put an emphasis on hybrid cars and using HOV carpool lanes," she says. "They seem to make up for their size and commute, and really decrease their fuel-to-miles ratio."

According to the National Energy Awareness Month website, the average household spends more than $2,000 per year on energy bills, but it also notes a typical dollar invested in efficiency brings more than twice that in returns.

Mike Clifford, Public News Service - NH