Give a Hoot, Don’t Pollute: tips from IAM RoadSmart

Blog post posted on 17/05/17 |

The planet will survive the question is whether we will be here to live and enjoy it. Littering and packing unnecessary weight in our cars are factors that are heavily impacting the environment. This week’s tips give advice on riding and driving with for the benefit of the environment, from IAM RoadSmart’s head of driving and riding standards Richard Gladman.

  • Always place rubbish in a bin or bag it for later. Nobody likes a litterbug; drivers who are littering will face automatic fines of around £75 but this is set to increase to £150 under current government plans. The fines apply to drivers and they will also be held personally responsible for any litter chucked by their passengers


  • For multiple car owners in one house hold, why not car share? If you are doing the morning commute it is better to have fewer cars on the road and also can save money on fuel consumption.  Park and ride can also be a green option with new services being added all the time


  • If you must drive only carry what is needed. Declutter the boot as the extra weight makes your engine work harder, leading to increased fuel consumption


  • Let’s not be idle. Leaving your engine running when you are not moving or parked wastes a lot of fuel and is illegal. Start your engine when you are about to move, and if your vehicle is fitted with stop start make sure you know how to properly use it


  • Plan your journey, getting lost and stuck in traffic wastes fuel


  • Check your tyre pressures as underinflated tyres waste valuable fuel. And while you are at it remove any unused roof racks or roof boxes.  Keeping windows closed at high speeds reduces drag but go gentle on the air conditioning and other electrical extras as they are well known to add to engine load.  Do you really need the heated seats on in summer!

Richard said: “A small amount of planning and preparation will go a long way in minimising your carbon footprint, an added bonus is the money you save on fuel.  Keeping your car in tip top condition with regular servicing is essential but at the end of the day your driving style will have the biggest impact. Remember if you stop on route don’t leave your litter for others to clear up.”