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Everyday Environmentalist

Embrace Public Transportation

"Public transportation helps cut down on some of the commuting pain while saving money and helping the environment." - Andrew Benson, GLOBE intern

Nobody likes long commutes that include heavy traffic and impatient motorists. When I first came to The Nature Conservancy, I had every intention of moving into an apartment closer to work. Unfortunately, my wallet had other plans. Finding a place to live for a short period of time – near the heart of Washington, DC, and on an intern’s salary – proved to be difficult. So I stayed at home in the tiny town of Cross Junction, Virginia.

Driving 85 miles each way to and from work isn’t an ideal situation. Thankfully, public transportation helps cut down on some of the pain while saving money and helping the environment.

The typical morning begins at 4:00 am when I wake up and prepare for the day. I leave my home no later than 5:10 and carpool to Leesburg, VA, with my dad for the 50-mile trip. Once there, I catch the 6:25 commuter bus to Rosslyn.

Commuter buses are awesome for a variety of reasons. Instead of 100 cars pumping toxins into the environment, a fraction of pollutants are released. In addition the environmental benefits, riders don’t have to deal with traffic, and have the option to take a nap or catch up on work. Some commuter buses even offer free Wi-Fi! After arriving in Rosslyn, VA, I take the Metro Train for the final leg of my trip to the worldwide headquarters of The Nature Conservancy.

Although there are always going to be some schedule kinks, many people in DC don’t own cars because the trains and buses take them just about everywhere they need to go for a fraction of the cost and headache.

Public transportation is always worth a look when planning a trip. I like to use Google Maps to plan my trips. From just about any start and end point, it will schedule the best route for you to take and may uncover options you didn’t know existed.

No matter how long your commute is, it’s possible to be green and save time and money.

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