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How to motivate masses to reduce fuel usage? | Government

How to motivate masses to reduce fuel usage? | Government


Well that was the title… reduce fuel usage

Here is my submission to the Indian Government  


To the Government of India,

If you really want people to stop using petrol/diesel even for one day -> then you must do this:



The fundamental principle of Economics –the queen of social sciences- states that: People respond to incentives.

If you reward a behavior, they will do more of it. if you tax them, they will do less. So, create incentives. It is that simple! 

The kinds of incentives you can create are:

  • Tax reduction – to people who use eco-friendly vehicles.
  • Tax reduction bonus + random monthly rewards (like money or good citizen on-stage awards) to people who commute to work by walking or by means of cycles or other eco-friendly options.

-Some countries actually rewards people by giving them money to not use cars/ non-eco-friendly vehicles.  But this might not work in India because of our dense population, and due to another fundamental principle of Economics: Law of unintended consequences.


So, whatever incentives you set: make sure the wordings are accurate and actively look out for unintended consequences by waging war with a multitude of counselors.

  • Introduce electric bikes –which are cycles that run on battery- at an affordable price. Also create places where one can park cycles i.e. you can chain lock your cycle with a post fixed on concrete. Seriously parking cycles in public area is just unsafe at the moment. So you got to create those, if you want people to use cycles more.

    electric cycles
    Hulikkal Avatar E-Bike
  • Bring Tesla electric cars, and provide charge points across the country. I know this process has already been initiated, so more focus on this, please! And reduce the tax for Tesla, so that they can do better sales; and it will be more affordable to people in India. If you tax them a lot, then price is going to be higher than normal and not a lot of people can afford it.

    Tesla Model 3

  • Create deals with eco-friendly car manufacturers and allow them (or) make them to provide a discount when people exchange their non-eco-friendly cars for eco-friendly ones.
  • Start taxing people who use non-eco-friendly cars. You are going to have to start taxing them anyway at one point. So start doing it now. Of course, this also means getting rid of old junky government buses.

Again we are not going to achieve these in a day, and it’s unrealistic to do so. Let this be 5-10 year government objective. But, you got to start this today! Only then you can hope to achieve this in 10 years or sooner.


Regarding random rewards

Give / Reward randomly to 40 to 100 (if possible even 1000) people in every urban city across the country, every-month, for either: not using petrol/diesel vehicles least a day in a week (or) for using their eco-friendly one, and of course, for people who cycle or walk to work. It can be money rewards or even publicity awards, like their names and photos can appear on newspapers across the country or they get to appear in tv or whatever. Just reward people!

And don’t think rewarding money to people is a bad thing. Because, another fundamental economic principle state:

There are always (at least) two sides to every interaction. 


Example: By rewarding people and by increasing the minimum wage -> people will have more money. When they have more money -> they will buy more! Be more luxurious -> when they buy more, you will sell more! Make more money! -> to sell more, you need to produce more -> to produce more, you need more employees! New jobs! -> New jobs means more income -> so people buy more -> and the GDP increases -> the economy grows -> people are happy and on and on… This is win-win –Pareto’s Efficiency.


The inverse of that ^ is what is happening across the globe i.e. People are paid less -> they buy less -> less sales -> less production -> less jobs -> less income -> low or stagnant GDP -> slow or stagnate economy -> people are unhappy -> the rich stays rich and the poor stays poor -> economic collapse. Lose – Win Scenario.


Point is: Rewarding people monetarily is equal to investing on the economy. So reward people more! And also increase wages! Let’s not make the mistakes of first world countries. It’s better to have efficient economy, than not.


One more point to note: You cannot expect people to do anything, without providing them with incentives. Everyone or most people around the globe know that: ‘it is harmful for the environment to run on petrol/diesel fuels’ but they do it anyway! Because: A. they don’t have alternatives (or) B. there are no incentives -for them to switch over. You can’t expect people to stop running cars without providing them with alternatives. Likewise can’t expect car owners to switch over to eco-friendly cars without providing them an option for exchange of their old non-eco-friendly cars.


You can find my article here on: How to make Chennai Better?

For more reads check out the blog!

Thank you, & have a nice day!

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