Monday, August 31, 2009
The Hole In The Wall Gang ...
Are you a member of the "hole in the wall gang?" Do you get meals in a car from someone "throwing food through a hole-in-a-wall to you? Have you ever really thought about that? Lets leave the food out of the discussion.. for now.
Every time you use a drive through, you burn at least 18 -25 cents worth of gas idling your car. According to Quick Service Restaurant Magazine, the average drive through wait time once the order is taken is three minutes. Add the minute or two that it takes to place the order, and that means one billion car-minutes spent idling each year in front of Burger King restaurants alone! Estimates for total fuel costs for idling in front of every drive through in America are in the hundreds of millions of dollars. You have to let your window down twice ; to order and to get your food.. ( some places have a third window just to pay.) Its not just food that's served ... a heaping helping of hydrocarbons, nitrogen oxide, carbon monoxide... all toxic- are served right along with the fries.
An idling car is guilty of using up valuable fuel, not only unnecessarily wasting this expensive resource, but also causing danger to the environment and a risk to the health of many others. Idling may actually harm your vehicle, but that's only the start. It can also be responsible for increasing pollution levels caused by gasoline burning in the atmosphere.
Reportedly idling Americans burn at least 2.9 billion gallons of gas a year, worth around $7.82 billion, according to a recent report from Texas A&M. That doesn’t count the damage done to idling engines by incompletely burned fuel. There are a lot of studies, and people often disagree on the numbers. But ask yourself, would you really want to spend a lot of time behind a vehicle in a long line breathing in the exhaust?
Neither does the planet.
Many people believe that there are times its okay for their car to be idle. This common misconception is what makes parents rushing to drop their children off at school or those in a hurry at the cleaners to leave their car in this dangerous mode. Avoiding idling can also help preserve your car's engine. An engine that's in an idle state doesn’t operate at its peak temperature and fuel combustion is unfinished. This causes fuel residue to constrict cylinder walls, expel oil and harm engine components.
The damage that can be done by an idle car, though, isn't limited to just the vehicle itself. Idle cars produce emissions that have been found to negatively affect respiratory health. Vehicle exhaust also contributes to unhealthy air quality and the presence of smog. These factors have resulted in ailments like asthma, emphysema and chronic bronchitis. Children and the elderly have been affected the most, but the environment itself is also impacted.
So lets see:
Idling your car gets:
ZERO miles to the gallon, damages your engine, wastefully pollutes the environment -outside and in, directly and immediately endangers the health of children and the elderly, is specifically a waste of money and dwindling natural resources.
Long lines of idling cars doesn't seem too "green" now does it?
What can you do?
Some cities and countries have anti-idling laws. What do you think?
Should cars automatically turn off when in idle? ( hint: mine actually does)
at 4:58 PM