One Trip A Week
Helping to clean our air and improve our well-being doesn’t have to mean turning your life upside down. It can be as simple as avoiding one short car trip – or even leaving the car at home – just one day a week.
Leaving your car at home one full day a week saves gas money and stress and prevents 55 pounds of lung-damaging air pollution a year. If just a tenth of our region’s approximately 2 million residents chip in, it means saving 5,500 tons of pollution a year. If half of our region’s residents chip in, it saves 27,000 tons a year.
It can also save your family money. Calculate the true costs of driving.
It’s not as hard as you may think to drive less. According to 2006 study by Regional Transit and the Federal Transit Administration:
- “Compulsory” activities such as driving to work, school or to work-related business make up just a fourth of our total car trips;
- A third of car trips are for leisure activities;
- Roughly a quarter of car trips are a mile or less. More than a third are less than 2 miles.
Call “511” or visit www.sacregion511.org for tips on transit, carpool options and networks, bike routes and walking opportunities.
Other Things You Can Do
Some other things you can do to help us breathe easier:
- Don't drive on Spare the Air days. Sign up for Air Alerts;
- Help launch and support clean-air programs at your work or business;
- When you drive, keep your car well-tuned and your tires inflated to proper pressures. Refuel in the evening and never top off;
- Replace gas-powered lawn mowers, trimmers and leaf blowers – all big polluters – with electric models;
- Avoid burning wood in the fireplace or stove solely for aesthetic reasons. Sacramento has some of the nation’s worst soot pollution on a daily basis – and as much as 40 percent of winter particles come from woodburning. Take advantage of financial incentives for clean-burning EPA stoves;
- Avoid household sprays, paints, pesticides and chemicals that release smog-forming vapors;
- Pay attention to bad air days and use activity charts published by health experts to guide your decisions about exercse and activities;
- Support smart-growth policies and principles that help move jobs, homes and services closer together for easy access by foot, bike or transit. Support the Sacramento region’s Regional Blueprint smart-growth plan and tell your elected officials that implementing it is a big priority;
- Retire your older vehicle. Purchase a low- or zero-emission vehicle powered on electricity, compressed natural gas (CNG), liquid natural gas or propane, biodiesel or 85 percent ethanol;
- Tell your elected officials that air quality is a priority.
- Teach your children about air quality with interactive tools like the free Planet Polluto software and fun, educational air quality games.
How to help at work & business
How to help us grow smarter
How to get involved in the Partnership