Friday 4 May 2007

Start-Stop system on cars should be mandatory

This afternoon, after work, I treated the car to a carwash. Probably not very eco-friendly in terms of water use, but it's something we do maybe once a year, soooo...

Anyway, when I arrived in the queue, there was a car in the carwash, and two cars ahead of me waiting. Just after I parked up a car arrived behind me. I had turned off my engine, because if you are going to be stopped for more than 30s, it's best to switch off, as you'll inevitably use more fuel idling your engine than you will restarting it. So I waited in the queue and waited, and finally it was my turn. And as I stood at the machine thing where you choose your wash programme, I noticed that the chap in the car that had arrived after me was running his engine. In fact, he'd probably never switched it off since he'd been queuing. That was probably FIFTEEN MINUTES of waiting time!

There are two aspects I haven't been able to get my head around. 1/ He must be really well off if he can waste fuel so wantonly; 2/ He must never have heard the words 'carbon footprint', 'greenhouse gases' or 'climate change'.

My idea: bring in legislation requiring ALL new cars sold in Europe to incorporate technology to the Stop and Start system offered by Citroen (sadly only on one of its cars). Would need some fine-tuning (like not relying on the sole use of the footbrake to keep the car stationary at lights) but it's a good start. Because I see far too many blithering fools sitting in the car with the engine running when they are clearly not going anywhere. And it would go some small way to achieving carbon emissions targets.

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