Green Driving America Inc. is implementing The Clean Transportation Path© - a funded project featuring guest-speaking webinar presentations in high school classrooms.
NOTE: Smart Driving from the Start© is also offered as a presentation under The Clean Transportation Path project that is intended for Driver Education classes and and Career and Technical Education (CTE) classes: presentation details here.
With today's blend of vehicles, those dominated by the internal combustion engine (ICE) and now the emergence of vehicles powered by electricity, green driving basically means two things:
• What we drive: cleaner vehicles such as plug-in hybrid electrics (PHEVs), or all-electrics (EVs)
• How we drive: smart driving practices such as accelerating and braking smoothly, watching speed, and avoiding unnecessary idling
Smart driving practices are admirable in achieving reductions in emissions and pollution, and increases in fuel economy. But this alone is not the solution. In the U.S., the largest share of GHG emissions comes from transportation. ICE vehicles, which have been on the road since the 1800s, are putting us nearer to a precipice:
• CO2 emitted into the atmosphere that is seriously impacting our climate
• Fossil fuel use, from extraction to emissions
• Air quality / health impacts of tailpipe toxins
Now, for humans and for the planet, it is time to accelerate the transition to clean vehicles.
HOW A DIFFERENCE CAN BE MADE: The Clean Transportation Path (TCTP) presentations focus on the cost savings / CO2 emissions and fossil fuel use reductions / improved air quality benefits of plug-in vehicles (PHEVs and EVs):
• How they operate and differ from traditional gas vehicles
• How their maintenance/repair costs are typically one-half of gas vehicles
• Details on plug-in vehicle charging and a state’s growing charging station infrastructure
• Purchase/lease incentives of new and used versions of these vehicles
• How they perform in cold weather
Our presentations have a brief segment of smart driving practices in gas-powered vehicles, as these vehicles are still the predominating form of road transportation.
Our presentations also touch on alternatives to driving, including public transportation, bicycling, walking, and ride sharing/car pooling.
For the 2023-24 and 2024-25 school years, Green Driving America (GDA) is offering guest-speaking webinar presentations (such as with Zoom) in high school environmental science, science, math, STEM, driver education, and Career and Technical Education (CTE) classes. They are conducted by one of our trained college level interns; these interns are volunteers that are paid a stipend1. These presentations are at no cost in funded areas including all of Vermont and the Upper Valley of New Hampshire, thanks to GDA grant awards from the Climate Catalysts Innovation Fund of the Vermont Council on Rural Development, and an anonymous foundation in the Upper Valley of VT and NH. GDA is pursuing funding to offer these presentations in other parts of NH, as well as for other New England states, New York, and Oregon.
Presentations are 45 minutes2 to an hour or more, depending on time flexibility. They include:
• PowerPoint with four videos (see below)
• Student PDF handout covering presentation content and more - customized for each state (Vermont shown in this example)
• Engagement: intern presenter asks audience several questions during the slide show; if additional time, Q and A / discussion session follows (intern provided with knowledge of electrification beyond presentation content)
• Optional Quick Quiz: five-minute, nine question, mostly multiple choice; answers revealed in a PowerPoint slide
• Q & A and/or a group discussion can fill any remaining time.
The PowerPoint is customized for each state, for example showing a state's EV charging station locations, and available EV incentives/rebates/credits.
The preeminent source of electrification advocacy and information in Vermont—Drive Electric Vermont—has endorsed The Clean Transportation Path presentation for the state:
"Drive Electric Vermont endorses The Clean Transportation Path presentations Green Driving America is giving in Vermont high school driver education and STEM classes. The benefits of electric vehicles (EVs) to future drivers of Vermont are clearly described in the presentation, along with important information on incentives and additional cost savings associated with EVs. Vermont has ambitious goals to reduce transportation emissions – achieving them will require many new drivers to consider EV options in the years to come!"
1Optionally, educators can utilize students from their host school, who would be comfortable in public speaking, to give in-person presentations. They would be trained by the educator and/or virtually by the GDA executive director (educator would attend such a session). Host school student presenters would be in a voluntary, unpaid role.
2Truncated 30-minute presentations also available
NOTE: Upon request, educators given a virtual prescreening by GDA executive director
Educators having a potential interest in incorporating our classroom sessions into their curricula,
please contact Wayne Michaud
email: firstname.lastname@example.org • phone/text: 916-209-0224
GDA evolved from an organization also run by executive director, Wayne Michaud, that was founded in Vermont: Idle-Free VT, that specialized in conducting educational projects in the school community. The organization was awarded grants to implement these projects starting in 2013. They were split into two efforts:
1. measured idle-free schools campaigns at 16 schools from 2015 to 2023 (12 in Vermont; four in California)
2. a predecessor of the presentations we are giving today. More than 120 of these guest-speaking presentations were conducted in driver education and science/math educator classes from 2013-2016.
In 2021, GDA began implementing the Green Driving from the Start (GDFTS) project, offering presentations in driver education classes. These presentations covered both smart driving practice tips for gas-powered vehicles (to reduce CO2 emissions and fuel costs), and an introduction to low- to zero-emission vehicles. In 2022, the GDFTS project name was changed to The Clean Transportation Path (TCTP). This allowed the project to be focused on low- to zero-emission vehicle education for high school STEM education classes, though, starting in 2024, Smart Driving from the Start presentations, intended for driver education classes, are also offered under the TCTP project.
FOR INTERESTED EDUCATORS: Below is a YouTube video of images (advancing in 12 seconds each), not narrated, from the full animated The Clean Transportation Path PowerPoint slide presentation shown in the classroom; the presenter provides elaboration on the slides. NOTE: this is the PowerPoint for Vermont; it is customized for each state.
Also shown are YouTube videos of the four videos included in the presentation.
NOTE: The Clean Transportation Path© presentation is the property of Green Driving America Inc. It may not be used or recorded without permission. The other videos below are open source and may be freely used.
Gasoline, Gasoline, the World's Aflame is another video that educators may be interested in showing beyond the time allotted in presentations.
(customized for each state; Vermont shown)
WHAT WILL THE DIFFERENCE BE?: GDA sees the vitally important reasons why new and future drivers need to embrace the electrification of transportation. Chief among these is that many states are confronted with their highest percentage of GHG emissions coming from transportation, as well as tailpipe toxins from gas vehicles that can impact our health. And that, to address this issue, some of these states, including those in New England, New York, Oregon, and California, have very robust goals to increase electric vehicle registrations by 2030. The Clean Transportation Path educational sessions will make a difference as a percentage of students will grasp and apply the compelling information shown. They (and by extension, some of the adults around them) will learn to be more environmentally responsible drivers as well as being shown the path to EVs. Over the coming years, each student who makes the choice not to drive an ICE vehicle, will avoid the consumption of many hundreds to thousands of gallons of fuel, resulting in reductions of many tons of CO2 emissions.
The Clean Transportation Path logo, title, presentation and materials are copyright © 2024 by Green Driving America.