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Green Drivers Help Improve Air Quality
Thu, 19 Jun 2003, 22:34

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(NAPSI)—Motorists can become “green drivers” by regularly carrying out simple car care and maintenance procedures that also can help our nation continue to improve air quality, a non-profit transportation research group reports.

The Road Information Program (TRIP) provides “green driving” tips on its Web site, showing that motorists can do their part for the environment and conserve fuel by following routine car care maintenance procedures such as keeping engines well-tuned, having exhaust systems inspected regularly, keeping tires properly inflated and not “topping off” when pumping fuel.

“Motorists can help the environment by taking proper care of their cars in ways that will improve air quality,” said William M. Wilkins, TRIP’s executive director.

“Equipment maintenance and inspection are important because most air quality improvements over the past 20 years have come about because of improved automotive technology,” Wilkins said. “If motorists avoid topping off when they fill their gasoline tanks it will keep wasteful gasoline fumes from being released into the atmosphere.”

Wilkins said major strides have taken place to improve air quality through automotive and technological innovations such as the catalytic converter and emissions control devices, which most newer cars have. Regular tailpipe inspections also ensure that emissions equipment is working properly to reduce vehicle emissions.

In fact, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has reported that emissions from automobiles have declined significantly since 1980. EPA data shows that, from 1980 to 1998, overall highway vehicle emissions of volatile organic compounds, nitrogen oxides and carbon monoxide were reduced by 41 percent, 10 percent and 35 percent respectively.

“These air quality improvements have taken place at the same time that highway travel increased by 72 percent,” Wilkins said.

Moreover, the EPA has projected that emissions of volatile organic compounds, nitrogen oxides and carbon monoxide will continue to decrease through 2010.

TRIP is issuing its updated “green driving” tips as part of its public awareness campaign to educate motorists about steps they can take to help improve the environment. These include:

• Avoid excess idling in non-traffic situations;

• Accelerate smoothly and maintain steady speeds;

• Do not pump the accelerator if the car has fuel injection; and

• Plan and consolidate your trips to bypass congested routes.

TRIP’s “green driving” tips are available by clicking on the Web site at

It’s easy being green, when you take a few simple steps toward better car maintenance.

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