It is possible that no invention has had as profound an effect on society as the passenger automobile. Road transport is one of the biggest sources of pollution, contributing to poor air quality,climate change, congestion and noise disturbance.
Air pollutants from transport include nitrogen oxides, particles, carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons. All have a damaging impact on the health ofpeople, animals and vegetation locally. In town centres and alongside busy roads, vehicles are responsible for most local pollution. Vehicles have a major impact on the environment through theirconstruction, use and eventual disposal. In addition to these emissions of carbon dioxide and other air pollutants, the vehicle and related industries consume large amounts of raw materials, and producesignificant quantities of waste.
Whilst travel by car is often the only practicable option, there are simple steps we can all take to reduce the number of journeys we take and their impact on theenvironment. Small changes to your daily routine can add up to big differences in helping to stop global warming.
Avoid using cars for short journeys – alternatively, walk, cycle, or take a bus.
Care foryour vehicle – check tuning, tyre pressure, brakes and fuel consumption – regular servicing helps keep your car efficient and saves fuel.
Drive gently – racing starts and sudden stops increase fuelconsumption. Use higher gears when traffic conditions allow.
Switch off when stationary – if stuck in traffic or stopping more than a minute.
Downsize - a smaller car will save you money and reducepollution.
A number of Electric Vehicles are available. They are cheap to run and have virtually no emissions at the point of use. The drawbacks are that battery technology,although improving, remains heavy and expensive. Electric Vehicles have a limited range and can take several hours to recharge, but are worth considering as an urban runabout for shorter journeys....
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