Yellow cabs going green

The mean streets of New York City will be a little cleaner in 2012, when the only taxicabs allowed to cruise them will be eco-friendly hybrids.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced the plan last week, along with increased gas-mileage and emissions standards beginning next year.

Traditional New York City taxis average about 14 miles per gallon. After the new regulations, they will get about 30 miles per gallon. Bloomberg’s plan reportedly will cut the carbon emissions of the city’s stable of taxis by 50 percent during the next decade.

The sweeping reforms will cover a fleet of about 13,000 vehicles, only 375 of which are now hybrids. Powered by a combination of electricity and gas, hybrids yield better gas mileage with fewer emissions.