Yup. We're Screwed.
In case you haven't noticed--and if you haven't, you either ride your bike to work, office out of the house and never leave or are a 2-year-old mooching rides off your folks--gas prices have risen dramatically in recent weeks; according to the most recent AAA gas price survey, released March 24, the priciest gas sold in Texas was being pumped in Dallas, where the average price of unleaded climbed 15 cents from just the week before to a break-the-bank $2.52 per gallon. Well, what would happen if gas got so expensive no one could afford it--save for, oh, Mark Cuban and Don Henley? Turns out Dallas ain't prepared at all for the kind of energy crisis that would erupt should oil top $100 a barrel. According to the Web site SustainLane's survey on the subject, Dallas ranks a dispiriting 37th on the list of the top 50 U.S. cities when it comes to withstanding such an oil crisis.
The study was the result of data collected from several sources--including the U.S. Bureau of the Census, U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Texas Mobility Study/Texas A&M. Then SustainLane "analyzed commute trend data within major cities--how many people rode, drove, carpooled, walked, or biked to work. Then we looked at how much people rode public transit in the general metro area, and metro area road congestion. Sprawl, local food, and wireless connectivity made up our final areas of data analysis."
Austin comes in at a fairly decent No. 20 in the list; Houston, a surprisingly high No. 28; Fort Worth, a stunningly awful No. 48. Well, off to lunch now. Say, can you give me a ride? --Robert Wilonsky