Annual tons of CO2 per person

Annual tons of CO2 per person

Check this out for reflection:

Annual tons of CO2 per person:

Ethiopia: .01

India: 1.1

China: 3.2

Sweden: 5.6

France: 6.2

UK: 9.4

Japan: 9.7

Germany: 9.8

CANADA: 17.9

USA: 19.8

It’s us, the one billion affluent people of the world whose footprints are crushing the planet.  Do we have the discipline to step more lightly?  We are losing respect of our international community.  The mass consumption of our society has created an epidemic of obesity, asthma, respiratory problems, etc.

What You Can Do to Help

Public Participation Meeting on Tuesday July 15th | 4pm | Centennial Hall.  Please come to show your support. You are welcome & encouraged to speak.  (limit 5 min.)

The city of London and its people must recognize that drive thrus are an incredible detriment to our environment and are a luxury item.  It comes down to this – Do we choose to protect and keep non essential items such as drive through or do we choose to re-design our planet in which future generation can live?   Our communities must start drastically cutting out emissions – drive- thrus should be viewed as a very simple place to start. The benefits are immense – environmental health, physical health.  People stepping out of their cars symbolize people re-engaging in community. Such a culture shift is a step to encourage people to slow down walk or bike, and to ride mass transit.  Slowing down is necessary in this fast-paced culture. We have to organize a resistance to the momentum of running.  If we learn how to slow down and nourish ourselves, we can pay more attention to living sustainably and mindfully in our communities.  Many of today’s problems are rooted in efficiency and convenience; we zoom from place to place without slowing down to enjoy the simple joys around us. Sustainable yet slower modes of transportation like walking and biking, getting us out of our cars and help us to do that. This gives us the clarity and mindfulness to recognize things as they are. When you are mindful, you recognize what is going on, what is happening in the here and now.  Without mindfulness we make and spend our money in ways that destroys us and other people. We use our wealth in such a way that we destroy ourselves and other people. Climate change is upon us – a grave threat to all life on this planet.  The time is now to place our environment and the health and well being of our children ahead of business interests and profits.  The well being of our citizens is the City of London’s mandate.  Quote – Vision London – London, The Forest City: We are a caring, responsive community committed to the health and well-being of all Londoners.  The actions we take will be socially, environmentally, and fiscally responsible so that out quality of life is enhanced and sustained for future generations.  Our people, heritage, diverse economy, strategic location, land and recourses are our strength. – Based on this vision in conjunction with the Stern Report, the city of London must, with urgency,  recommend that staff be directed to review the possibility of imposing a moratorium on all new commercial drive-through operations.

What you can do to help before Tuesday:

  1. Contact City Hall

Email or call.  Demand a healthy, sustainable city for our children.  A city built around people – not automobiles.  A city shaped by community, not industry. Cc your email to Lorelei Fisher (secretary) at:

City of London – Board of Control

Mayor Anne Marie DeCicco-Best
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 4920
Tom C. Gosnell (Deputy Mayor)
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 0332
Gina Barber – Board of Control
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 7011
Gord Hume – Board of Control
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 4877
Bud Polhill – Board of Control
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 4882

City of London – Administration

Jeff Fielding – City Manager
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 4997
Rob Panzer – General Manager Planning and Development
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 8435

City Councillors

Ward 1 – Roger Caranci
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 4597
Ward 2 – Bill Armstrong
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 4943
Ward 3 – Bernie MacDonald
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 4884
Ward 4 – Stephen Orser
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 7012
Ward 5 – Joni Baechler
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 2444
Ward 6 – Nancy Branscombe
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 7014
Ward 7 – Walter Lonc
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 7015
Ward 8 – Paul Hubert
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 7016
Ward 10 – Paul Van Meerbergen
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 1558
Ward 11 – David Winninger
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 6505
Ward 12 – Harold Usher
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 4879
Ward 13 – Judy Bryant
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 0370
Ward 14 – Cheryl Miller
City Hall: 519.661.2500 ext 4880

  1. Call your physician

As your doctor to support a moratorium on new drive-thrus.

  1. Write a letter to the editor

The London Free Press (email)

The Londoner (email)

  1. Call your MPP and tell them you would like the province to do more to place moratoriums on all new drive-thrus and place a carbon surcharge tax on all existing drive-thru purchases.
  2. Send this site link to friends, neighbors and others you believe are concerned.  Learn about the greenwashing efforts orchestrated by the industry.
  3. Call the media if you witness customers being harassed to sign petitions from industry. Call the London Free Press, the A-Channel, Rogers Television and local radio stations.
  4. POST the “No New Drive-thrus” posters and encourage others to do the same.

  1. Write to industry! Ask them to invest in our children’s future instead of an elaborate greenwash campaign. Ask them to STOP exploiting our youth, our people with disabilities & our environment.

Please contact Luc Erjavec CRFA’s Vice President, Atlantic Canada  at: 1.877.755.1938 or 1.902.425.0061

And American Owned Tim Hortons Contacts (TDL Group):

TDL Group – Nick Javor, Senior Vice-President, Corporate Affairs, 905-845-6511 javor_nick @

9. Please Sign Our Petitions

Clean Air for Children:

Ban Drive-thrus In Canada:–throughs-in-canada

Where Do We Idle

A lot of idling is done while waiting in line at drive-thrus. If you buy a coffee five days a week, and typically wait three minutes in line at a drive-thru to get it, in just one year you would save almost $100 by parking and going inside to get your coffee.

Drive thrus (bank, fast food, coffee, liquor store), schools, corner stores, construction line ups, malls, friend’s houses, long traffic lights. Where do you idle?

So here’s your 10 mins of idling:

You get your morning coffee: 3 minutes

You wait at the construction: 4 mins

You wait to pick your colleague to car pool: 2 mins

You check phone messages and program music while car is on before driving away: 1 min

Average idling time spent at a Tim Horton’s drive-thru:

Daily emissions at one Tim Horton’s outlet:

  • University of Alberta estimates 385 kilograms of CO2 emissions per day.

**Study undertaken by University of Alberta of a Tim Horton’s in Edmonton over a 54 hour period.

Fast food drive-thru average times, according to Fast Food News:

  • Wendy’s 2:25 minutes
  • TacoBell 2:60 minutes
  • McDonald’s 2:70 minutes
  • Burger King 2:76 minutes

Other places we also tend to idle are:

  • Construction sites on the road
  • Gas line ups
  • Car washes
  • Schools

Therefore when you are waiting to pick up your child from school, or in a line of traffic at a construction site, turn off your car. Not only will turning off your car save the environment but it will also save your money and reduce the wear on your cars engine. Better yet, go for a walk to pick up the kids from school and everyone can get some exercise!

If you pollute, you should pay

The carbon tax brought in by the Canadian province of British Columbia that came into effect on Canada Day, July 1, and which is being advocated at the federal level by the Liberal Party of Canada led by former environment minister Stephane Dion, recognizes if you want people, and organizations, to curb their pollution then they should pay for polluting. If they, and we, want to pay less then they, and we can pollute less. It’s that simple.

The hard fact is that pollution costs all of us. The environment is not a “free lunch”.

For example, a study by the Ontario Medical Association, The Illness Cost of Air Pollution, estimates that in the province of Ontario in 2005 “overall economic losses associated with air pollution exposure are expected to be in the order of $7.8 billion. This total is expected to increase to over $12.9 billion by 2026.”

Such losses are borne by all taxpayers. By shifting the cost burdens to those who create them at the sources will reduce taxes, healthcare costs, and increase productivity.

Carbon taxes help place the burden of responsibility for the environment on where it should lie, on each one of us.  It gives us clear choices: pay more or use and/or encourage employees to use mass transit, initiate a telework program, use conferencing rather than travel to meetings, retrofit a building to curb energy demand. It is up to us to make the right decisions.

Carbon taxes should not be tax grabs. Instead the money should go to strategies to lower emissions, such as investments in mass transit, developing alternative energy sources and promoting conservation, in encouraging and incentivizing telecommuting programs, and to enable residents and organizations to make purchases that will cut pollution.

Both the British Columbia program and the federal Liberal proposals provide either for tax credits or reductions that give money back to help make the changes.

The province is also investing heavily in mass transit in the Metro Vancouver area, smaller cities, and in rural areas. While more can be done, and some of its highway expansion plans are a little shaky environment-wise (there are many studies that show that new highway capacity fills up in a few years because it encourages pollution-spawning sprawl), the province’s plan is one of the most dynamic and gutsy approaches ever made by any North American government on this issue. It is matched only the no-freeways stance in Portland, Oregon in the 1970s that initiated that city’s mass transit and carbon-minimizing smart growth renaissance.

With alternatives to emitting large amounts of carbon in place, there should be no reason to pay large amounts of tax. That’s a win-win for all of us.


The story of drive-thrus in our urban and rural lives is a brief but potent one.

This site introduces you to the issue of drive-thrus in Canada, their impact on our lives and the rationale behind having a moratorium on them in our culture and our city planning. Too much of our lives are wasted in cars. Using drive-thrus only accelerate this waste. Research repeatedly clearly establishes that in an age of rising gas prices, sitting idling in a line-up for fast food or cash at a bank is just foolish.

Drive-thrus are just the tip of the iceberg for an unsustainable lifestyle. By supporting our opposition to new drive-thrus and by helping us develop recommendations that we can take to municipalities across Canada, you will be helping us mature to a new level of responsibility and sustainability.

This site was made available for you.

  • It’s a resource to find information, reports, studies, etc. on drive-thrus
  • Comment on articles
  • It’s a social movement: mobilize your local community to support these recommendations
  • It’s a national concern: everyone who provides feedback and support on this site shows the world that we care about our cities, the environment and our health
  • An Exhaustingly Bad Habit – Myth Busting

    Myth Busting
    There are many reasons why people will tell you they should
    idle their vehicles’ engines. For instance, some people think that
    it uses more fuel or is more polluting to start and stop an engine
    than to leave it running. It’s true that catalytic converters –
    which reduce carbon monoxide and hydrocarbon emissions –
    work best when warmed up. However, the best way to warm the
    converter is to drive the vehicle. Studies show that in cold
    weather, a gasoline engine that is shut off for under 10 minutes
    does not cool down enough to reduce the effectiveness of the
    catalytic converter. And in warm weather, idling vehicles circulate
    coolant that may cool the engine and catalytic converter
    faster than turning it off.
    As for saving gasoline, a light-duty car with a warm engine
    that idles for more than 10 seconds burns more fuel and emits more greenhouse gases than shutting down the engine and starting
    it again.
    Many people believe that in cold weather, they must warm
    up their vehicle for a few minutes before driving. However,
    modern electronically-controlled engines do not need to be
    warmed up. To make matters worse, emissions from an idling
    vehicle in winter conditions are more than double the normal
    level immediately after a cold start. Vehicle engines warm up
    fastest when a vehicle is being driven, so as long as your windshield
    and other windows are clear of frost and snow, there is little
    reason to idle on start-up. Use of a block heater in very cold
    weather warms the engine before starting and reduces pollution
    even more.
    At any rate, warming up the vehicle involves more than the
    engine. The tires, transmission, wheel bearings and other moving
    parts also need to be warm for the vehicle to perform well.
    And most of these parts don’t begin to warm up until you drive.
    In fact, excessive idling can damage your engine’s components,
    including cylinders, spark plugs and the exhaust system.
    Diesel vehicles, on the other hand, do require a few minutes
    to warm up before being driven. Fortunately, there are available
    a variety of anti-idling devices designed to reduce the need for
    idling to warm up the engine, cool the vehicle or run auxiliary
    equipment when stopped.
    Diesel trucks create a particular problem, especially the hundreds
    of thousands of heavy duty, long-haul trucks with sleeper
    cabs that crisscross the continent. The drivers of these trucks are
    required to take safety rest periods at truck stops or rest areas every
    day. Most truck drivers leave their engines running during
    these rest periods to provide power for heat, air conditioning, refrigeration
    and other systems. This engine idling burns nearly a
    billion gallons of diesel a year in the U.S. alone, emitting an estimated
    20 tons of air pollution and greenhouse gases.
    In order to reduce this sort of truck idling, systems have been
    developed to provide alternative power. One such technology is
    called Truck Electrified Parking (TEP.) TEP provides grid-supplied
    electrical power through electrical outlets mounted on
    pedestals at truck stop and rest area parking spaces. Truckers
    need to install 120-volt appliances or converters, but the cost
    works out to less than the cost of burning diesel fuel. The system
    has been tested in New York State and became operational
    along transportation corridors in Washington and Oregon just
    this past summer.

    Click to access SeptOct07.pdf

    An Exhaustingly Bad Habit – Solving the Problem

    Solving the Problem
    Municipalities, non-profit organizations and individual activists
    have all become interested in cutting back on vehicle engine
    idling. Groups like the Oak Bay Green Committee in
    Victoria, B.C., have spearheaded community No Engine Idling
    Campaigns. This campaign and many others like it are designed
    to help people remember that improving air quality can be as
    simple as switching off your engine while your vehicle is
    stopped. So next time you find yourself in a traffic jam, take a
    deep breath and switch off that key. Our health and that of the
    Earth is at stake. – NL –
    What Can I Do?
    If you’re stuck in a traffic jam, waiting for a lift bridge or a
    train, or sitting more than three cars back at a stoplight –
    where you could be stopped for more than 10 seconds –
    turn your engine off.
    Don’t press the gas pedal while re-starting your car, or
    you could negate the benefit of turning off the engine.
    Find out if your municipality has a no-idling bylaw and
    how it’s enforced. If it doesn’t yet have one in place,
    lobby for one.
    Use educational tools like no-idling signs, bumper stickers
    and leaflets. (See below for some of these tools and
    Ask your local school board and school bus company
    about its vehicle idling policy.
    Wherever possible, walk, bike or take public transit.
    Learn More
    No Engine Idling Campaign in Victoria, BC sells Idle
    Free Zone aluminum signs:
    Natural Resources Canada has developed a web-based
    tool kit to assist municipalities and community groups
    across Canada with taking action to curb unnecessary
    vehicle idling at the local level. Visit their website at:
    In the US, the EPA has a Clean School Bus USA
    National Idle-Reduction Campaign for school authorities,
    school bus drivers, parents and teachers. Visit:
    Airwatch Northwest has a website full of anti-idling resources,
    including downloadable fact sheets, posters
    and other educational materials at:

    An Exhaustingly Bad Habit

    Climate change is a global problem, but a big part of the solution
    lies in the hands of individuals – including the millions
    of people who drive vehicles. If you have ever left your
    car’s engine running while waiting to pick someone up, if you
    have ever been stuck in a traffic jam or if you have ever sat with
    your car idling while waiting in line at a drive-through teller or
    restaurant, then you are part of the problem.
    Idling for five minutes a day in a small car will burn 38 liters
    of gas a year and release 88 kilograms of carbon dioxide (twice
    as much in a large car.) For every thousand small and large cars
    that idle for five minutes a day, that’s 132 tonnes!
    A recent study suggests that in the peak of winter, Canadians
    voluntarily idle their vehicles for a combined total of more than
    75 million minutes a day – equivalent to one vehicle idling for
    144 years.
    According to Natural Resources Canada, for every liter of
    gasoline used, the average car produces about 2.4 kilos of carbon
    dioxide. If every driver of a light duty vehicle avoided
    idling by five minutes a day, collectively over the year, we
    would save 680 million liters of fuel and over 1.6 million tonnes
    of greenhouse gas emissions.
    Idling is Bad for our Health
    Research has demonstrated a direct link between contaminants
    in vehicle emissions and respiratory problems. Smog –
    caused in part by vehicle exhaust – results in increased hospital
    admissions, respiratory illnesses and premature deaths, particularly
    in urban areas. Health Canada estimates that more than
    5,000 Canadians die prematurely each year because of air pollution,
    and thousands more become unnecessarily ill. The World
    Health Organization reports three million people now die each
    year from the effects of air pollution. This is three times more
    than those who die each year in auto accidents. Children are particularly
    vulnerable to air pollution because they breathe faster
    than adults and inhale more air relative to their body weight (approximately
    50 percent more per pound than adults, according
    to an EPA information sheet on school bus idling.)
    For that reason, school buses and parents waiting outside
    schools create a major idling problem. Air pollution also causes
    unnecessary difficulty for elderly people and those with respiratory
    problems, such as asthma, emphysema and chronic bronchitis.
    These health problems could become even more common
    and pronounced as climate change progresses. That’s because
    climate change results in more frequent and severe heat waves,
    which tend to make smog and air pollution worse.

    Click to access SeptOct07.pdf


    Challenge for Canadians

    Most of the energy we use each day produces greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from the burning of fossil fuels. On average, each Canadian generates just over five tonnes of greenhouse gases per year by driving vehicles, heating and cooling homes, washing and drying clothes and using other appliances. By making choices that reduce our GHG emissions, we are doing our part to address climate change.

    “Canadian motorists idle their vehicles an average of five to 10 minutes per day,” said a Natural Resources news release. “A recent study suggests that in the peak of winter, Canadians voluntarily idle their vehicles for a combined total of more than 75 million minutes a day – equivalent to one vehicle idling for 144 years.”

    If idling was avoided – most cars are ready to go after 15 to 30 seconds – Canadians would save 1.8-million litres of fuel per day, preventing 4,500 tonnes of greenhouse-gas emissions from entering the atmosphere. Natural Resources Canada goes on to argue that, beside wasting money, fuel and contributing to pollution, idling damages an engine. That’s because an idling engine runs at a cool temperature and does not burn all the fuel that leaves residue on the cylinder walls and can cause damage.

    Furthermore, idling an engine does nothing to warm up other parts of the car. Other “myths” include the suggestion that starting and stopping a car causes wear and tear and that it uses up more fuel. “Believe it or not, more than 10 seconds of idling uses more fuel that restarting the engine,” Natural Resources found. More frequent use of the starter and battery adds $10 a year to the maintenance of a car, far less than the money saved by using less fuel.

    • Transport – Cars travel about 15,000 km a year, creating six tonnes of greenhouse gases. You can cut greenhouse gas emissions now, by using your vehicle less.

    • Drive less. Reduce the number of car journeys you make, by planning ahead. Can you do without your car? Live close to your workplace, use public transport, cycle, walk, car pool or use a taxi. They are all options for helping take vehicles off the road.

    Thank you for choosing to no longer use drive-thrus…

    On behalf of our children, your children and children all over our small planet – thank you for your time and consideration.
    Council of Canadians