At the Coalition for Clean Air we walk the walk when it comes to public transportation, subsidizing the cost of public transportation for each of our staff members and interns. There is no question in our minds that taking public transportation one of the best ways to reduce emissions.
What we have not really talked about is how much anyone can benefit financially by choosing public transportation over driving their own car to work day in and day out.
Enter Larry Williams, recently retired Chief Management Analyst for the City of Los Angeles, whom I met – you guessed it – on the metro train to Union Station.
Apart from being impeccably dressed, eminently knowledgeable about all kinds of resources in our city and just an all-around positive human being with a great smile, he also has a passion for spreadsheets. So much so, that he has calculated the amount of money he saved by taking public transportation for the entirety of his civil servant career.
Ready for this?
Larry saved an astonishing $154,121 travelling from different communities in L.A. County and the Inland Empire (Downey, Tustin, Saugus, Chino Hills) to his work in downtown LA.
And he sent me the excel sheet to prove it.
Knowing his affinity with numbers, I asked him to do one more calculation: How much money would that be if invested every month at an average rate (6%) of interest over the course of his working life?
That’s enough to buy a 3-bedroom house in Chino Hills, the neighborhood where Larry and his wife currently live.
Here at CCA, our foremost concern is protecting public health and preventing the devastating effects of climate change. Public transportation is an important “weapon” in the fight for clean air. Keep a lot more dollars in your own bank account by leaving your car at home and taking public transportation whenever possible.
Who knows what you could do with all that money you’ll be saving?