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Reducing Car Pollution

Think about the types of trips that you and your family take in cars, and avoid driving when it is unnecessary.

Think about walking or riding your bike when you are taking very short trips and don't have to carry much luggage. And think about how much fitter and healthier you will be!

What about car pooling? Often there are people in the same area as you and your family who travel in the same direction at about the same time of day. Also, think before you drive. Plan trips so they are multi-purpose, for example pick up all the shopping and in the same trip visit the bank and library! This is also much more time-efficient for the busy person.

How about public transport! Travelling on trams, buses and trains is a quick and relaxing way to reach our destination. It gives us time to read books and catch up with friends who might also be travelling the same way!

Just remember, for every kilometre you and your family don't drive the air is made a little healthier for you to breathe.

So exactly how often do you and your family use cars? Is there any way to change car use to reduce pollutants being pumped into our air?

What can we do?

Sometimes there is no choice and we just have to drive. But there are things you and your family can do to make sure your car pollutes less.

First of all, buy the most fuel efficient car that meets your family's needs. This will lead to fewer emissions.

The most important thing you can do is keep your family car well maintained. That means making sure it gets an oil change and is tuned regularly!

You should also make sure that you:

  • have a well fitted fuel cap on your car to avoid the unnecessary release of fumes from your petrol tank into the air where they can be breathed in and contribute to photochemical smog
  • think about converting to Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG). This will not only reduce your contribution to air pollution, but is also more cost effective
  • remove any extra wind resisting items from your car, such as the roof rack, you will save on fuel and at the same time improve air quality
  • keep tyres inflated to the specified pressure to reduce resistance
  • resist the temptation to ‘hot up' your car - research has shown that cars altered beyond manufacturers' specifications do not run as well and are considered worse polluters. Besides, in Victoria it's ILLEGAL to modify a vehicle. So, if you are caught, you will not only be fined, but you will have to change it back!

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