– Geysir Goes Green –
We have for a long time kept a close eye on the development of new and greener cars and we are really looking forwards to seeing these become a more viable choice for our clients and us.
As a rental company in a scarcely populated country there are a number of challenges that don’t exactly help us taking on some of the wonderful, new technology that is being developed towards greener transport. But, if we’re so enthusiastic about this technology why doesn’t Geysir Car Rental offer electric, hybrid and hydrogen fueled vehicles?
Well the short answere is… We do!
We really like the idea of vehicles driven by electricity. We love the idea of a low maintenance vehicle. We love clean, cheap fuel. Unfortunately, as it stands, for most of the world the electric car is merely pseudo green. The electricity that drives it is in large generated from fossil fuel in the first place. It does not help being clean if you made a mess somewhere else. But electricity in Iceland is 99% hydro- or geothermal. It’s super clean. So great then
It is great, but it’s not that simple. The idea of traveling around Iceland in a fully electric vehicle has simply not been marketed enough. Not a lot of customers read up on driving around Iceland and plan their trip with the charging stations around the island in mind. Perhaps we can be of assistance on that matter.
Let ther be no doubt about it, electric cars are great for city drives. Up until recently it was not a realistic possibility to take a fully electric car on a roadtrip around Iceland. Now there has been some serious infrastructure development in Iceland and now the ring road has officially been closed, with no electric charging stations with over 100KM in between them.
You can see a map of all the active charging stations in Iceland HERE
They’re great if you live in a big city and spend most of your driving time either idling or stuck in a perpetual queue. Most hybrid cars only use the electric drive system at lower speeds and during frequent start/stop driving. Rush hour isn’t exactly an issue in any city, or town in Iceland. There’s simply not enough of us. Most of our clients are visiting Iceland for its rural beauty and spend little time in urban areas. Perhaps they’re even trying to get away from the big city with their perpetual queues and chaos. Unfortunately most hybrid cars we have looked at have poor fuel economy on their fossil drive system. When driving most hybrid cars at outer city speeds you’re not likely to be using the electric drive system at all. This renders most hybrids a poor option compared to an efficient conventional fuelled car. And again there is the issue of reconditioning and recycling the batteries.
This is the green fuel source that will still make a car behave and run like a normal car. And that is very appealing to us simply because we really love cars. Reykjavik is doing great for hydrogen driven vehicles. Most of Reykjavik’s city buses are in actually fact driven by hydrogen and have a fantastic infrastructure at their fingertips all around the city. The rest of the country isn’t doing so great for hydrogen. Hydrogen stations are virtually non-existent outside the capital area. So many of our customers would end up doing one-way trips to the countryside, and then we’d have to tow them back. Although a hydrogen fuelled car is a safe build the fuel on its own the fuel still has a somewhat volatile temper so a hydrogen jerry can to top your car up could also just as well top you off, like the Hindenburg.
IS IT EASY BEING GREEN?
So how will we make an effort to become greener? For starters we enforce recycling and re-use policies within the daily running of our company. Our fleet of vehicles is well kept and operates well within regulations. We make sure to offer a range of vehicles that fit our clients’ needs. We offer small cars for small groups and larger cars for larger groups and clients with demanding luggage needs. We have wimpy vehicles who slide along the paved road and beasts that negotiate the harsh mountain trail with force. The energy exchange has started and we plan on leading the way.
“The energy exchange has started and we plan on leading the way.”
Initially sceptical to the hype and hysteria of Carbon Offset Credits when they were first introduced. Now that the fuzz and media hype has settled we’re clearly seeing who’s serious about their business. Now, if you’re thinking that planting a tree may simply be a nice gesture but that it won’t stop vehicle emissions, then you’re not seeing the entire picture. There’s that entire thing called photosynthesis from which land based trees and plants give us about half the earth’s oxygen supply. Phytoremediation is the process where plants absorb, store and brake down chemicals and gases including carbon dioxide. While reforestation helps filter, clean up and renew the atmosphere, the bigger picture includes heavy investment in developing and building carbon neutral energy, both use and production as well as keeping our oceans in good shape as they count for the other half of our oxygen production.
In February 2008 Iceland committed to the Carbon Neutral Network, an initiative led by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). This makes us proud and we want to do our part to keep that commitment.