I’ll Only Be A Minute…

With the weather turning colder, we’re more likely to consider idling our vehicles to stay warm. In fact, over 80% of Edmonton drivers idle their vehicles, with the average Edmontonian idling for over 6 minutes. That’s a lot of wasted gas, not to mention a lot of pollution.

But what is “unnecessary idling” and why is it an issue?

Unnecessary idling is when your vehicle engine runs for no reason – for example, leaving your car running while waiting to pick someone up, while you run into a store or waiting for a train to pass.

As to why it’s an issue, we posed the question to Edmonton-area youth and received some very creative answers. The City of Edmonton, in partnership with the Alberta Capital Airshed Alliance, The Lung Association, the University of Alberta’s Office of Sustainability and the City of St. Albert, ran a video contest for youth ages 7 to 18, focusing on the message to “Be Idle Free”. We received 20 entries into the contest and the winners were honoured November 3 at City Hall.

You can check out all the videos at www.beidlefree.strutta.com. The winning videos were:

Grand Prize: Be An Idol – Don’t Idle

Age 7-11: No Idle is Awesome

Age 12-14: Stop Idling!

Age 15-18: Help Mother Nature Heal, Turn Off Your Automobile

Congratulations to the winners, and a big thank you to all participants. There were a number of great entries, but this one is my favourite:

So as the temperature continues to dip and we’re shivering in our cars, just remember to “dress for the weather, buddy!”

And remember to Be Idle Free: A Minute or Less is Best!

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About the Author
Karen Yeung
Karen Yeung is the marketing coordinator for the City�s Office of Environment. She is part of the community and employee engagement team which focuses on helping Edmontonians make our city more sustainable.
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