Changing the way you travel around can help to reduce the impact your journeys have on the environment. Driving your car more efficiently, using alternative transport for some of your journeys, combining your trips, sharing car journeys with friends and using your local facilities are all easy ways to make a difference. Smarter driving saves you money by reducing the amount of fuel you use. It also cuts down on unnecessary wear and tear on your car and the amount of pollution your car generates.
Smarter driving tips
- Start your car only when you are ready to move off, there is no need to warm up the car, or sit idling. If you are stuck in traffic turn the engine off as restarting uses less fuel than idling.
- Try to drive smoothly and look beyond the car ahead to anticipate traffic flow. Keep a safe distance from the car in front, so you can act rather than react when their brakes come on.
- Change gears as soon as possible to keep revs below 2,500 rpm. If you drive an automatic, ease back on the accelerator when the car gathers momentum, and your gears will change up more quickly and smoothly.
- Keep extra weight out of your car. Take off external sun visors and roof racks when you are not using them to help reduce drag.
- Only use the air conditioner when really needed. At speeds over 50 kilometres per hour, an air conditioner is more efficient than having the windows down, which causes lots of drag.
- Plan your trips to combine journeys wherever possible. Lots of short trips means more mileage and higher level of emissions.
- Keep your car well maintained – have it serviced regularly and make sure you maintain the correct tyre pressure. This makes sure your car is working efficiently and can reduce the amount of fuel you are using.
Why not try to replace some of your car journeys with an alternative? Shorter journeys might be a good opportunity to use your bike or get your walking shoes on. A longer journey could be made by using public transport if it is available in your area. Find out whether your school has a walking school bus. You could also think about offsetting your vehicle emissions to reduce the impact of the journeys you have to make by car.
What is Council doing?
City of Casey has reduced the engine size of its fleet vehicles and bought liquid petroleum gas (LPG), dual fuel and hybrid vehicles to reduce fuel use and emissions. Council offsets 100% of the emissions of the fleet. The “Ghan” train at Myuna Farm is powered by an electric engine, supplemented by photovoltaic panels with nominal output of 160W. Council took part in the Victoria electric vehicle trial through the South East Councils Climate Change Alliance (SECCCA). The City of Casey has also taken another step forward to reduce its impact on the environment with ‘green’ waste contractor Corio Waste Management putting its first Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) truck into service to collect public litter and recyclables. Council is always investigating opportunities to make its fleet even more sustainable.
For more information please contact the City of Casey Environment Department on 9705 5200.
Links to further information
http://www.metlinkmelbourne.com.au/ journey planner for public transport
http://www.casey.vic.gov.au/bikes/ link to Casey Travelsmart map (cycle routes)