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The person who calculated this bit of information is now, and has been a professor at the University of West Virginia in Morgantown for the last 40 some years.

He says that:

 

  • A clunker that travels 12,000 miles a year at 15 mpg uses 800 gallons of gas a year.
  • A new vehicle that travels 12,000 miles a year at 25 mpg uses 480 gallons of gas a year.
  • So, the average Cash for Clunkers transaction reduced gasoline consumption by 320 gallons  per year.
  • The government claims 700,000 clunkers have been replaced so that is 224 million gallons saved per year.
  • That equates to a bit over 5 million barrels of oil.
  • 5 million barrels is about 5 hours worth of US consumption.
  • More importantly, 5 million barrels of oil at $70 per barrel costs about $350 million dollars.
  • So, the government paid $3 billion of our tax dollars to save $350 million.

They spent $8.57 for every $1.00 they saved.

I'm  pretty sure they will do a much better job with our healthcare though.

Snopes information on the subject:
http://www.snopes.com/politics/gasoline/clunkers.asp

If you take into account the Snopes information of each barrel of oil resulting in less gasoline and you factor in a vehicle lasting 4 years. the newly calculated savings can be as much as 2.9 billion dollars. This is still a net loss of 100 million taxpayer dollars.

Operating a program at a loss still cost the taxpayers money. Eventually, the money will run out.

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