African liveability Mobility Sustainability

10 Tips to help you drive efficiently

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The City of Cape Town’s transport department would like to get all Capetonians thinking about – and implementing – its fuel efficiency campaign as part and parcel of its 2010 Green Goal initiative.

As part of its 2010 Green Goal Programme, the City of Cape Town is embarking on a fuel efficiency campaign in order to encourage motorists to think carefully about how they drive. Smooth, steady driving, lower speeds and a sleek vehicle profile all help to reduce fuel consumption, save fuel costs, and result in fewer vehicle emissions into the earth’s atmosphere. These emissions contribute to both local air pollution and climate change.

Transport consumes more energy than any single other activity or industry sector in Cape Town; it accounts for 55% of our total energy consumption, and for 28% of all carbon emissions. More than half of the energy consumption by the City administration itself is by its vehicle fleet. Greenhouse gases (GHGs), particularly carbon dioxide (CO2), are produced when fuel is burned in your vehicle’s engine. For every litre of fuel you use, your car generates about 2.4kg of CO2.

Which is why it makes sense to drive in such a way that uses less fuel. Make every day a fuel-saving day, and you’ll save money and reduce the negative impacts on the environment.

10 tips to help you drive efficiently:

  1. Service your vehicle regularly. Correctly maintained cars can operate more efficiently and help reduce CO2 emissions.
  2. Check your tyre pressure monthly. Under-inflated tyres can increase fuel consumption by up to 40%.
  3. Remove unnecessary weight from your vehicle. The heavier the car, the harder the engine has to work and the more fuel it consumes.
  4. Close your windows at higher speeds and remove empty roof racks. This will reduce wind resistance and can lower your fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by up to 10%.
  5. Use air conditioning sparingly. Unnecessary use increases fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by up to 5%.
  6. Reduce idling. If you are going to stop for more than 60 seconds, turn off your vehicle’s engine.
  7. Avoid speeding and drive smoothly. Increasing your speed from 100 km/h to 120 km/h can increase your fuel consumption by 20%.
  8. When accelerating, change gears as early as possible. Higher gear ratios consume less fuel.
  9. Try to anticipate traffic flow. Look at the traffic as far ahead as possible in order to avoid unnecessary stopping and starting within the flow of traffic.
  10. Walk, cycle, car pool or take public transport. Fewer cars on the road means less congestion and therefore less stop-start traffic (which wastes an enormous amount of fuel).

Should you have any queries or would like more information please contact Niki Covary, Transport Department, City of Cape Town at niki.covary@capetown.gov.za.

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