AA says eco-driving will cut costs

by GreenWire.org.uk. Published Wed 24 Jun 2009 00:29
Using SatNav is one green driving technique that saves time and money

The environmental arguments for adopting a greener approach to driving are backed up by economic fact, according to the President of the AA.

Speaking at the Fleet News Green Summit in London later today, Edmund King will tell fleet operators that the effects of the current recession and rising cost of fuel make this the right time to embrace eco-driving techniques.

King said: “Drivers who do not accept the green arguments for considering car use should consider the economic arguments. A clean, green car can be lean and mean. Drivers can save money and reduce CO2 emissions by choosing the right vehicle and adapting the way they drive.

“Technology can help us - Sat Nav and congestion avoidance systems can save us a third of our driving time and more than a quarter of our fuel.”

According to a Traffic Master study, using a good satellite navigation device to stay on the most direct route can reduce the distance driven by 16 percent, the time spent at the wheel by 18 percent and fuel consumption by 15 percent. Using a system that is updated with live traffic information to avoid congestion saves a further 14 percent of driving time on congested roads.

These benefits are cumulative - with fleet management, navigation and traffic information working together, there is the potential to reduce overall fuel consumption by 28 percent and driving time by 32 percent.

Other factors in greener motoring include driver training, employee incentives, travel plans and environmental labelling of both new and used cars, as well as the provision and use of gear shift indicators and tyre pressure monitoring systems.

These kind of considerations for more environmentally responsible driving are being evaluated by individuals as well as businesses, as a recent survey of 18,500 motorists revealed.

As King will highlight in his address, the AA/Populus panel survey showed that 60 percent of drivers would implement eco-driving, with 62 percent willing to buy a more fuel efficient car and three percent stating they would give up their cars entirely. When it comes to financial encouragement, 51 percent of respondents would take advantage of discounts to buy greener cars and 28 percent would use incentive scheme to scrap older cars.

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