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Thursday, July 10, 2008

Greener travel: a quick guide

Personal travel accounts for up to a quarter of all the damage individuals do to the environment across Europe, including climate change effects. You can reduce the climate change impact of your travel in a number of ways.

1. Consider travelling less

Can you get what you want nearer to home, or without travelling at all? For example, holidaying in the UK, using local leisure facilities and shops, or sometimes working from home. Reducing your travel will reduce climate change effects and local air pollution.

2. Try different ways to get around

Leaving your car at home and walking, cycling, or taking the bus or train will help reduce the negative impacts of driving. It is also possible to travel longer distances by other modes of transport, not just air.

3. Drive to reduce your fuel consumption

Making some simple changes to the way you drive can reduce fuel consumption and reduce climate change effects. For example, driving smoothly, sticking to the speed limits, and keeping tyres properly inflated.

4. Buy a more efficient car

You don't have to compromise to buy a greener car - just choose a more fuel efficient one. New cars carry a fuel economy label telling you how efficient they are. Choosing a more efficient car can help reduce carbon emissions and local air pollution, and will often save you money on vehicle tax and other charges, as well as on fuel.

5. Maintain your vehicle responsibly

Well maintained vehicles tend to run more efficiently. Waste from car maintenance is often hazardous, like engine oil, other fluids, batteries and tyres. Careless discarding of these items can cause pollution but council waste facilities will be able to accept them for safe disposal.

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