New study reveals Alabama's 'addiction' to oil

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - A new report reveals Alabama has an oil addiction.

The National Resources Defense Council says Alabama ranked 44th for states promoting clean energy technology and reducing dependence on oil.

The Principal Transportation Planner at the Regional Planning Commission of Greater Birmingham says public transportation would help solve the problem, but it will take more than that.

"The real key is land use," said Darrell Howard, "Trying to change our development patterns. Basically, Birmingham is sprawling and that is hard for public transportation to work."

In addition, Howard says the city needs more sidewalks and bike lanes, and drivers will have to change their approach to public transportation. Drivers don't agree.

"I would prefer to drive myself," said Jesse Thomas, "I live outside of Jefferson County, and public transportation would be an inconvenience for me."

The report also noted Alabama ranked 20th in the nation in the amount of money the average driver spend on gas annually.

The average driver spends over 5 percent of their income on gas.