'Stop The Engine' for a greener future

Posted on: Thursday, June 20, 2024

Did you know that an idling car produces enough exhaust emissions per minute to fill 150 balloons with harmful chemicals including cyanide and nitrogen oxides (NOx)?

We believe in a future where everyone can breathe clean air and thrive in a healthy environment, and that is why Newark and Sherwood District Council is reaching out to the local community to help improve our district’s air quality and asking them to stop their engine when their car is idle.

Idling is when a vehicle’s engine is left running whilst stationary and this creates pollution which quickly builds in the air around and inside your car and impacts the quality of the air in the local area and contributes towards air pollution.

The District Council has created the Stop The Engine campaign to raise awareness about the importance of turning off the engine of an idling vehicle and the harmful impact it can have, on both our environment and our health. It is working with school pupils, parents, carers, teachers and local community members to encourage them to make a change and spread the message!

Schools, hospitals and bus stops are typically vehicle idling hotspots, particularly during pickups and drop offs, and the age groups frequenting these locations, such as children and older people, are particularly sensitive to the harmful effects of air pollution, which can cause heart and lung disease, strokes and cancer.

The District Council has created an informative leaflet for all schools in the district to access and distribute to their pupils, parents and carers. It will also continue working with local schools to develop the campaign and a tool kit of helpful assets in the future.

Every minute a car idles, it emits unnecessary greenhouse gases and by stopping vehicle idling we can help to reduce our carbon footprint, something the District Council is committed to. Poor air quality is the biggest environmental risk to public health in the UK, and by tackling unnecessary vehicle idling we can decrease air pollution and ensure cleaner, fresher air for the district.

Jenny Walker, Business Manager for Public Protection at Newark and Sherwood District Council said: “We know targeting air pollution, especially around schools is important to many of our residents. We are proud to proactively work with schools and parents to address this. Our new campaign is set to raise awareness about the harmful effects of idling. Not only are our children disproportionately affected due to schools being hotspots for vehicle idling, but they are also much more at risk from the harmful pollutants that can lead to respiratory issues and reduced cognitive function in children. Our children deserve better!

“The message of our campaign is very simple, turn off your engine when your car is parked and encourage others to do the same!”

The campaign has also been launched in support of Clean Air Day, the UK’s largest air pollution campaign that aims to raise awareness of the impact of air pollution and how we can all do our bit to help.

Pledge to #StopTheEngine when your car is parked and encourage parents, teachers, and community members to do the same! You can also share our campaign on social media, using #StopTheEngine, and help us to spread the word. Find out more about #StopTheEngine on Newark and Sherwood District Council’s website: https://www.newark-sherwooddc.gov.uk/airpollution/anti-idling/

Watch a short video on the campaign here: https://youtu.be/NYtGsXDyn9Y