Local Issue | Contact Councillors on the Idling Recommendation

Dear Citizens,

As citizens of London, you have an opportunity to voice your concern for our shared natural environment.  The startling stats can be found below.

The City of London will be making changes to our idling bylaw which was introduced in 1999.  City staff have recommended a one minute anti-idling bylaw with exemptions for temperature only for severe temperatures.

Proposed Amendments June 1st 2009

On June 1st it was amended to three minutes by ETC (Environment & Transportation Committee) and our current temperature exemptions were added back in.  Currently – Toronto is looking at ten seconds.  Burlington is 60 seconds with no temperature exemption.

If you missed the deadline today at 9am for the agenda – you have until the June 15th, 9am, for your comments to be added on as ‘added’ communications.  On the 15th the recommendation will go to council.  On the 22nd – there will be a public participation meeting.

Lastly – please engage your family and friends to write in a brief submission or call our elected officials in support of the one minute bylaw as presented by city staff. (Removing the amendments made at ETC which made it much weaker).  Our councillors want to hear from us.

Thank you in advance for your care and concern for we all breathe the same air.

It is our hope that sooner rather than later municipalities across Canada and the world will find the political will for a 10 second maximum tolerance on idling, as well addressing the infamous drive-thru issue.  Drive-thrus continue to proliferate as climate change escalates and air pollution becomes more and more dire.  For more information contact Canadians for Action on Climate Change: canadianclimateaction@gmail.com

Email addresses | Copy & Paste:

adecicco@london.ca,

bmacdona@london.ca

barmstro@london.ca,

bpolhill@london.ca

cmiller@london.ca

councillors@london.ca

dwinning@london.ca

gbarber@london.ca

ghume@london.ca

husher@london.ca

jbaechle@london.ca

jbryant@london.ca

nancy@nanbran.com

paul@paulhubert.ca

pvanmeer@london.ca

rcaranci@london.ca

sorser@london.ca

seagle@london.ca

tgosnell@london.ca

wloncc558@rogers.com

Please Cc:

Kevin Bain (City of London Clerk) kbain@london.ca

Linda Rowe (City of London Secretary) lrowe@london.ca

The Numbers:

  • Ontario’s smog causes 9,500 deaths per year, medical association says.  Of these 1,000 occurred immediately after times of intense pollution.
  • The research on the human costs of pollution and pollution-related diseases estimated that around 21,000 people in Canada will die from breathing in toxic substances drifting in the air this year with 3,000 of those deaths due to short-term exposure to smog.
  • By 2031, short term exposure to air pollution will claim close to 90,000 lives in Canada, while long-term exposure will kill more than 700,000, the report said.
  • Ontario and Quebec residents are the worst hit Canadians, with 70 percent of the premature deaths occurring in Central Canada.
  • In the past 15 years alone, there has been a fourfold increase in asthma in children under 15 in Canada.
  • OMA estimates for annual premature deaths (2130) due to smog in Toronto alone were almost three times the number of deaths (831) Health Canada attributes to secondhand smoke exposure for the whole of Canada.
  • In 2008, 80 per cent of those who die due to air pollution will be over 65.
  • 25 Canadians under 19 will die from short-term acute pollution exposure this year.
  • Children are the most vulnerable breathing 50% more air per pound than adults.
  • A child’s breathing zone is lower than adults so they are more exposed to vehicle exhausts and heavier pollutants that concentrate at lower levels in the air.
  • In 2008 there will more than 9,000 hospital visits and 30,000 emergency room visits, and 620,000 doctor’s office visits, stemming from air pollution.
  • Eight thousand people a day die from air pollution. There are 3 million annual deaths, worldwide.
  • Emissions from an individual idling a car in London, will emit nearly the same amount of emissions volume as the total annual emissions from an individual in Bangladesh.
  • More than 20 million people have been displaced by climate-related sudden-onset natural disasters in 2008 alone, according to a new study by OCHA and the Norwegian Refugee Council’s (NRC) Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre.
  • The total number of people affected by natural disasters due to accelerating climate change has risen sharply over the past 10 years, with an average of 211 million people directly affected each year, nearly five times the number impacted by conflict in the same period.
  • April 2009: CO2 hits 800,000-year high at Mauna Loa Observatory Mauna Loa Observatory, Hawaii (USA) Atmospheric CO2 reached 389.47 parts per million (ppm).
  • Wednesday June 10th – co2 went up again.  It is now at 390.18
  • The human respiratory system can only handle an upper level of 426 ppmv before the blood begins to become acidic after long-term exposure.

The Costs:

  • The national economy: air pollution will top eight billion dollars in 2008, and by 2031 it will go over 250 billion.
  • The Ontario Medical Association estimated that health care costs caused by poor air quality in 2000 would amount to nearly $630 million, not to mention the $566 million in costs due to workers taking sick days.
  • In Ontario alone, lost productivity will cost Canada $349,400 this year. By 2031 that will total over $9 million in damage.
  • Healthcare costs in the province will be $221,800 this year, up to almost $6.5 million total by 2031.
  • Economic damage to quality of life will hit $194,100 in Ontario in 2008, up to $265,000 in 2031 and totalling almost $5.5 million by that time.
  • Economic damage due to loss of life will cost $3,644,100 in 2008, rising to $6,367,200 in 2031, and totalling $115,674,500 by 2031.

Air Releases of Carcinogens by Province

Rank Provinces Air Releases of Toxics
of Carcinogens (kg)
Percentage
1 Ontario 2,736,369 38. 18 %
2 Alberta 1,283,727 17. 91 %
3 Quebec 1,261,851 17. 61 %
4 British Columbia 797,639 11. 13 %
5 New Brunswick 392,403 5. 47 %
6 Manitoba 369,686 5. 16 %
7 Saskatchewan 115,839 1. 62 %
8 Nova Scotia 97,280 1. 36 %
9 Newfoundland 65,029 . 91 %
10 Northwest Territories 29,103 . 41 %
11 Prince Edward Island 18,325 . 26 %

http://www.pollutionwatch.org/

Think drive-thrus are insignificant?  Think again …

idling-report-markham1

We have used the calculations provided to us in this study (idling times are completely in line with Tim Horton’s own study (3-4.5 minutes) & with the national average of 3.84 seconds) to produce a very conservative number for the total number of emissions, etc. produced in London drive-thrus.

London has 156 drive-thrus – so we have based our amounts on (29 x 5) 145 as opposed to 156 to keep our results conservative.

Here are the results: (City of London only)

  • Idling time: 108, 795, 760 minutes.
  • Fuel Wasted: 2, 175, 925 litres of fuel wasted.
  • Emissions: 590 tons of carbon dioxide & other pollutants.
  • To offset this amount of pollutants in one year we would need to plant 29,220 trees.
  • Fuel wasted – enough for an average car to circle the globe 425 times.

And this is ONLY London based on only 150 drive-thrus. Imagine the result from all cities in Ontario, in Canada, in North America, in the world.

For more info. on this study (data) please contact us at councilofcanadians.london@sympatico.ca

We thank Dave De Sylva for taking the time, effort, (out of pocket) costs and conviction to produce this report.

https://drivethrulies.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post.php?action=edit&post=309

You Can Help! Hand Out These Flyers to Idling Cars

http://www.sierraclub.bc.ca/quick-links/Turn%20it%20off%20handout.pdf

Idle-Wise campaign: One small action by a single person does have enormous impact.  Alone, it is a symbol – an example to many others.  When multiplied over hundreds, thousands and millions, it can be world-changing.  One small action every person can take is to shut off their vehicle if idling for 10 seconds or more, and to urge others do the same.  Turning off your engine saves gas and money, as well as cutting down on CO2 and air pollution.  We no longer accept people littering or giving us their second hand cigarette smoke.  Vehicle idling has even more serious implications, so let’s shut off our idle engines and educate other people to do the same.

Sierra magazine | Idling cars are an economic and an environmental disaster

Harming the environment is no idle threat | Idling cars are an economic and an environmental disaster

Sierra magazine, March/April 2009 issue, p. 14

How many times have you sat in line for several minutes at a bank or fast-food drive-through and wondered how much gas you were wasting? Perhaps you even thought of the possible environmental damage the idling cars was causing?

Idling is costly, in several ways: “Every hour you idle, you waste up to 0.7 gallons of gas (depending on your engine type) going nowhere. So it pays to turn your engine off if you’re going to be still for more than 30 seconds.

“In a given year, U.S. cars burn some 1.4 billion gallons of fuel just idling. Not to mention idling trucks, which waste another 1.5 billion gallons. Collectively, we emit about 58 million tons of carbon dioxide while we’re essentially doing nothing.”

Whether one goes to McDonald’s or Wendy’s or Burger King or another fast-food outlet, it takes on average close to 2 1/2 minutes to get your order and be on your way. McDonald’s consumers alone account for burning more than 7.25 million gallons of gas waiting in line!

The entire fast-food industry? We waste about 50 million gallons of gas!

All of that is bad enough. But we’re spreading our lazy, wastrel habits to the rest of the world which bodes nothing but ill for the future. “…McDonald’s plans to open 25 drive-throughs in China, following KFC’s lead. KFC installed its first drive-through there in 2002 and is working on 100 more. If China and India, which is also jumping aboard the drive-through bandwagon, get up to speed, they can idle away a truly staggering figure: 30 billion gallons of gas. Every year.”

What is the global-warming impact of the omnipresent drive-through?

February 25, 2009

Advice about recreational eating

Hey Mr. Green,
What is the global-warming impact of the omnipresent drive-through? Surely this has to be one of our biggest wastes of energy. –Robert in Biglerville, Pennsylvania

In drive-throughs or anyplace, idling is, to summon the old saying, the devil’s workshop. Every hour you idle, you waste up to 0.7 gallons of gas (depending on your engine type) going nowhere. So it pays to turn your engine off if you’re going to be still for more than 30 seconds.

In a given year, U.S. cars burn some 1.4 billion gallons of fuel just idling. Not to mention idling trucks, which waste another 1.5 billion gallons. Collectively, we emit about 58 million tons of carbon dioxide while we’re essentially doing nothing.

Taking the fast-food industry as an example, and taking into account that the average McDonald’s drive-through wait is 159 seconds, we can calculate that the company’s consumers burn some 7.25 million gallons of gas each year. The figure for the entire U.S. fast-food industry? Roughly 50 million gallons.

Though Wendy’s boasts that it zips you through in a mere 131 seconds, that’s about the amount of time it would take to slap together your own sandwich, or dump some leftovers in Tupperware, and bypass the lines (and perhaps a bypass) entirely.

The spread of American idle may be an exciting prospect for companies seeking to expand this lazy food-getting method to the rest of the world–but it’s a devastating one for the environment. Consider that McDonald’s plans to open 25 drive-throughs in China, following KFC’s lead. KFC installed its first drive-through there in 2002 and is working on 100 more. If China and India, which is also jumping aboard the drive-through bandwagon, get up to speed, they can idle away a truly staggering figure: 30 billion gallons of gas. Every year.

http://sierraclub.typepad.com/mrgreen/2009/02/advice-about-recreational-eating-.html

The High Cost to Society of Idling

Problems caused by idling

There are a number of problems associated with idling:


It’s expensive

Even if the vehicle isn’t moving, if the engine is running, gas and oil are being consumed. With fuel prices as high as they are, few of us can afford to be wasteful. But we are – and to a startling extent! A recent study suggests that during the winter, Canadians idle their vehicles for a combined total of more than 75 million minutes a day, the same as one vehicle idling for 144 years. If every driver of a light-duty vehicle in Canada avoided idling for just 5 minutes we would save 1.9 million litres of fuel worth more than $1.9 million.

Vehicle idling is a great concern to for many businesses and industries, particularly those that have fleets of vehicles for moving goods or people. The average long-haul truck idles away up to $1,790 in profits a year.

It’s bad for breathing

Burning fossil fuels like gas and oil produce emissions that aggravate existing heart and lung diseases, and cause respiratory illnesses. For example, two common tailpipe emissions – hydrocarbons and nitrogen oxides – react to form ground-level ozone. Ozone irritates and inflames the respiratory tract.

Do you know anyone with asthma? They’ll thank you for not uselessly idling your car. Ground-level ozone has been implicated as a bronchoconstrictor, causing airways to shrink or close, precipitating deadly asthma attacks. According to Health Canada, more than 16,000 Canadians die prematurely every year because of air pollution.

It’s bad for children

Children are particularly vulnerable to poor air quality – they breathe faster than adults and inhale more air per pound of body weight. Air pollution tends to be worse in the late afternoon, precisely when driving parents gather to pick up their children, who excitedly rush from school into clouds of exhaust from idling vehicles. Idling vehicles are also a safety issue.  Children are unaware of a vehicles intent when it sits idling.

It’s ineffective

Contrary to popular belief, idling is not an effective way to warm up your vehicle, even in cold weather. The best way to do this is to drive. In fact, with today’s modern engines, you need no more than 30 seconds of idling on winter days before driving away.

Idling only warms the engine, not the wheel bearings, steering, suspension, transmission, and tires. These parts also need to be warmed up, and the only way to do that is to get the vehicle moving.

It’s damaging

Idling isn’t good for your vehicle. Here’s why: an idling engine is not operating at its peak temperature, which means fuel combustion is incomplete. This leaves fuel residues that can condense on cylinder walls, where they contaminate oil and damage engine components such as spark plugs. When spark plugs are fouled, fuel consumption increases by 4 to 5 percent. Finally, idling can allow water to condense in the vehicle’s exhaust, causing rust in the exhaust system. As if the mean, salty winter roads weren’t enough to corrode your muffler to flaky brown bits.

20 Things you should know about idling

  1. Idling gets you nowhere – and it can be costly. Excessive idling wastes over $100 a year per vehicle, and generates needless greenhouse gas emissions.
  2. Idling produces more emissions per minute than driving.
  3. Engine exhaust (diesel and gas) contains more than 40 hazardous air pollutants.
  4. Traffic areas around schools – where vehicles are often left idling – show significantly higher pollution levels outside (and inside) their buildings.
  5. Contaminants in vehicle emissions have been directly related to significant respiratory health effects. A recent report by Health Canada states 5,900 Canadians die every year from air pollution.
  6. Children are more sensitive to air pollution than adults. In part because they are exposed to more emissions with every breath – children inhale more air per pound of body weight than grown-ups.
  7. Ten seconds of idling uses more fuel than turning off the engine and restarting it. If you’re stopping for more than 10 seconds – except in traffic – turn off your engine.
  8. If every driver of a light-duty vehicle in Canada stopped idling for just five minutes, we would save 1.8 million litres of fuel. We would also prevent more than 4,500 tonnes of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere.
  9. Idle-Free Zones are an effective way to increase awareness about idling and to reduce harmful vehicle emissions.
  10. Once a vehicle is running, the best way to warm it up is to drive it. With computer-controlled, fuel-injected engines, you need no more than 30 seconds of idling on winter days before driving away. The tires, transmission, wheel bearings and other moving parts also need to be warm for the vehicle to perform well. Most of these parts don’t begin to warm up until you drive the vehicle.
  11. Natural Resource Canada estimates Canadian motorists idle 5 – 10 minutes per day, depending on the season.
  12. Driving a vehicle cuts warm-up time in half. It reduces fuel consumption too.
  13. Every 10 minutes of idling costs you at least one-tenth of a litre in wasted fuel – and up to two-fifths of a litre if your vehicle has an eight-cylinder engine. Every litre of gasoline burned produces 2.4 kg of carbon dioxide.
  14. Excessive idling can be hard on your engine. Because the engine isn’t working at peak operating temperature, fuel doesn’t undergo complete combustion. This leaves fuel residues that contaminate engine oil and make spark plugs dirty.
  15. Restarting a car many times has little impact on engine components such as the battery and the starter motor. The wear on parts that restarting the engine causes adds about $10 a year to the cost of driving – money that you’ll likely recover several times over in fuel savings.
  16. If your vehicle has a diesel engine, idling actually lowers the coolant temperature faster than shutting off the engine. In other words, switching off the engine keeps the engine warm longer.
  17. A poorly tuned engine uses up to 15 percent more energy when idling than a well-tuned vehicle.
  18. Using a block heater is a more efficient and effective way to warm the engine than idling. A block heater warms the engine block and lubricants, which makes the engine start more easily and reach its peak operating temperature faster. You don’t need to leave a block heater plugged in overnight to warm the engine – two hours is more than enough.
  19. Idling your vehicle with the air conditioner on can increase emissions by 13 percent.
  20. Many schools have already reduced harmful vehicle emissions around schools, through programs such as “Turn Your Key – This School is Idle-Free” developed by Climate Change Connection and Resource Conservations Manitoba.

Tailpipe Emissions | These are the chemicals produced by a vehicle as it runs

Tailpipe emissions

78666166DPM004_EPA.JPG

These are the chemicals produced by a vehicle as it runs (1):

  • Carbon dioxide (CO2)
  • Nitrogen oxides (NOx)
  • Hydrocarbons (HC)
  • Sulphur dioxide (SO2)
  • Particulate matter (PM10)
  • Ozone (O3)

Carbon dioxide (CO2)

Sources:

The combustion of fossil fuels (oil, gasoline, coal, etc.); deforestation.

Every litre of gasoline that is burned produces about 2.3 kg of CO2.(2)

Impacts: Responsible for over 60% of the enhanced greenhouse effect, causing climate change.

Nitrogen oxides (NOx)

Sources: Residential and agricultural fertilizers; high temperature combustion of fossil fuels; incinerators.
Impacts: NOx is 200-300 times more effective than CO2 in greenhouse warming, a major compenent of smog, suppresses vegetation growth.

Hydrocarbons (HC)

Sources: Incomplete combustion of fossil fuel.
Impacts: Reacts with NOx and sunlight to form photochemical pollution (smog), mainly ground-level ozone.

Sulfur dioxide (SO2)

Sources: Combustion of fossil fuels, especially in locomotives, large ships, and construction equipment; mineral extraction from ore, gasoline from oil.
Impacts: Forms acid rain; forms atmospheric particles, reducing visibility and aggravafting existing heart and lung diseases.

Particulate matter (PM10)

Sources: Combustion of fossil fuels, forest and stubble fires, mechanical wear of vehicles parts (break lining, tires, etc.).
Impacts: Particles enter deeply into lungs, adhere to tissue; aggravates asthma, causes respiratory illness, causes premature death.

Ozone (O3)

Sources: Ozone is not produced directly by vehicles. Ground-level ozone is produced when nitrogen oxides (NOx), carbon monoxide (CO) and volatile organic compounds (VOCs), such as xylene, react in the atmosphere in the presence of sunlight. NOx and VOCs are called ozone precursors.
Impacts: Respiratory illness and distress, ozone makes people more sensitive to allergens, which in turn trigger asthma attacks

http://www.climatechangeconnection.org/Emissions/Tailpipeemissions.htm