This is a guest post by Chris Baker of www.carinsuranceforwomen.org.uk.
Here’s a way to help save the environment, and also save some cash for you. Adopting some environmentally friendly habits might just save you some money on your auto insurance. Look for these the next time your policy comes up for renewal and see what you qualify for.
Alternative Fuel and Hybrid Car Discounts
The cleaner your car’s fuel, the cleaner its emissions will be. Some insurance companies offer incentives for driving cars that use alternative fuels. Alternative fuels include electricity, biodiesel, ethanol, natural gas, and hydrogen.
The traditional model of auto insurance charges the same premiums to people with comparable driving risk factors, regardless of whether they have long daily commutes or only take their cars on occasional quick errands. But a new model gaining momentum throughout the United States and elsewhere in the world involves charging motorists premiums based on how much they drive. If they drive less, they pay less for insurance. The Brookings Institution, in a 2008 study, estimates that pay-as-you-go insurance can result in an estimated 8 percent decrease in driving nationwide, which would reduce damages incurred in accidents by about $50 billion annually. Carbon emissions would also decrease.
If you’re interested in switching to this model, find out if your state permits it. If it doesn’t, contact your state legislators. Several insurance companies offer sizeable discounts for low-mileage accounts, so it’s worth looking into.
While going paperless for receiving and paying bills isn’t directly related to your car or your driving habits, some companies will reduce your costs if you ditch the paper and the snail-mail. After all, going paperless reduces their costs. It’s one more little thing you can do that can have a big impact on the environment in the long term. The fact that it could save you a bit of cash as well is a nice bonus.
Why Insurance Companies Offer “Green” Discounts
Of course there are many folks out there who are concerned about the environment and want to provide incentives for those who adopt “green” practices. And those behind the insurance companies are no different. But there’s more to it than that.
Insurance companies calculate their rates based on several complex calculations, but ultimately it comes down to how much of a risk you and your vehicle present. In other words, based on what they know about you, your driving habits, where you live, the car you drive, and other factors, insurance companies calculate the likelihood of your being involved in an accident. If the likelihood is low, your rates will be relatively low. But if you are at a higher risk of being involved in an accident, your rates will increase because of the higher likelihood that the insurance company will need to pay out.
Insurance companies find that environmentally-conscious drivers will often follow other safe practices as well. They drive less look for alternatives to driving—such as using carpools or public transportation, or biking or walking when they can. Those who drive less will be involved in fewer accidents, and they’ll cost the insurance companies less because they don’t require as many large insurance payoffs. It’s that simple.
With carbon emissions and fossil fuel exploitation, he term “automobile” may seem almost a polar opposite of the term “green.” But there are some incentives out there for drivers who choose to make their car usage as environmentally safe as they can.
This post was contributed by a guest writer. If you’d like to guest post for Naturally Earth Friendly please check out our Become An Author page for details on how YOU can share your tips with our readers.