Haddonfield commissioners gave a proclamation at their meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 27 to show their support of “Idle Free New Jersey” and for the adoption of “Idle Free Zones.”
“We have been doing this annually to encourage people not to leave their cars idling when they’re parked,” Mayor Jeff Kasko said.
Idling cars can cause air pollution. Emissions from gasoline- and diesel-powered vehicles contribute to air pollution, including greenhouse gases, ozone formation, fine particles and a multitude of potentially harmful pollutants.
For every gallon of gasoline used, the average car produces about 20 pounds of carbon dioxide. The U.S. Argonne National Laboratory estimates about 20 million barrels of diesel fuel are consumed each year by idling long-haul trucks.
Vehicle owners can avoid producing unnecessary greenhouse gas emissions and exposure to air toxins by reducing or eliminating vehicle idling.
Idling for 10 minutes uses as much fuel as it takes to travel five miles. Moving beyond New Jersey’s existing no-idling code of three minutes would significantly improve public health, air quality and reduce costs and greenhouse gas emissions, officials said.
Commissioners supported the adoption of “Idle Free Zones” by government agencies, schools, businesses and other organizations.
They encouraged any gasoline- or diesel-powered motor vehicle to be turned off after 10 seconds if the driver plans to remain at that location for more than 30 seconds, especially locations such as school drop-off and pick up areas, drive-through windows, gas stations, parking lots and business centers. Commissioners will be sure municipal vehicles are maintained to eliminate any visible exhaust as well as support broad education of the public about the health, environmental and economic impacts of idling and ways to reduce idling.
They also plan to enforce existing violations and penalties under the state’s no-idle code along with many other ways the borough can help with gas emissions.
In other news:
Commissioners declared Oct. 5 Walk to School Day, encouraging not only those who go to school to walk for health benefits, but also those who drive to consider the safety of those pedestrians who walk on that day and every day.