Self-driving cars are called the next revolution in transportation with benefits such as fewer accidents, easier parking and more efficient navigation. They also hold the promise of lowering the impact of global warming effects by improving efficiency, safety and the quality of the driving experience.
Companies like Google, Toyota and Lexus have actively participated in projects to develop self-driving cars using sensors, GPS systems and laser technology for safety and performance.The push for a cleaner environment in the U.S. and throughout the world has led to further improvements for automotive efficiency through driverless cars.
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Here are five ways that self-driving cars might have a positive effect on the environment:
Driverless cars will be far more fuel-efficient than the cars on the road today. The computer and laser systems will allow motorists to drive closer together at steady speeds. This will reduce wind drag and provide consistent speeds to increase fuel efficiency by 20 to 30 percent, reports The Washington Post
. The GPS systems will eliminate traffic jams and built-in safety features will help avoid accidents. By eliminating unnecessary safety equipment, the cars could be up to 75 percent lighter to reduce fuel consumption.
Self-driving cars will waste less fuel in finding parking spaces. About 40 percent of fuel can be spent while drivers look for parking in congested urban areas, according to an MIT study
. The coordinated and efficient driving from autonomous cars will significantly reduce the unnecessary use of fuel.
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Car service will be easier and cheaper because of self-driving cars, resulting in fewer vehicles on the road. A car is parked and idling up to 95 percent of the time. Calling a car from a public service when it is needed makes it more efficient. It reduces the number of cars on the road because people use the service more often, avoiding the costs of owning a car, according to Sightline Daily.
Self-driving cars should encourage the use of eco-friendly electric vehicles, which will be much lighter than most of the current cars on the road. The range of self-driving cars will be greater, so they will be more attractive to drivers, reports The Washington Post. Electric cars use less fuel to decrease global warming effects.
There will be reduced stress for drivers. Driving a car in traffic can be so stressful that it is similar to the reaction of people jumping out of a plane, according to a study by Audi and MIT. Reducing this stress will result in fewer aggressive incidents, better driving experiences and decreased health costs.
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