Skip to main content
Tags: cars | global warming | idling

Cars and Global Warming: Does Idling Your Car Affect the Environment?

By    |   Sunday, 22 March 2015 08:03 AM EDT

Idling a car occurs when the car is stopped and the engine is still running. This can’t be avoided when drivers are stuck in traffic, but some drivers might keep the motor running when it’s unnecessary. Idling still releases pollutants that can contribute to global warming.

Traffic jams and congestion cause major gas emissions on the nation’s highways and freeways. Idling during stalled traffic could waste some 26 million tons of extra gas emissions a year, according to Global Workplace Analytics. You can’t do much about that when it becomes necessary to drive in traffic, but you can prevent idling your car at other times to help the environment.

ALERT: Is Global Warming a Hoax? Vote Now

Idling a car when unnecessary not only wastes money, but it also uses up fuel. An idling engine can use up to 7/10 of a gallon of gas an hour. Diesel trucks can use a gallon of fuel an hour when idling. Idling a car for two minutes can use up the same amount of gas as driving for a mile.

Whether you are driving or idling your car, it unleashes pollutants from the exhaust into the air. The gases emitted from an operating car include carbon dioxide, or CO2, a major greenhouse gas involved in climate change. For health concerns, the pollutants released from your car can aggravate existing conditions such as asthma or other lung diseases. The pollutants can also contribute to the cause of these disorders.

VOTE NOW: Are You Concerned About Global Warming?

Idling the car for more than 10 seconds uses more fuel and emits more greenhouse-gas emissions than simply restarting your engine. Drivers often think it’s unnecessary to turn off the engine for a short time.

However, when waiting for someone, turn the engine off if the wait is longer than 10 seconds. Restarting the engine will save more fuel and reduce gas emissions. If you know you will be stopped for more than a minute, except when in traffic, turn the engine off and restart it when it comes time to move.

Drive-thru lanes at fast-food restaurants are chief causes of idling cars. If the line looks too long, pull into the parking lot and order from inside instead. The more you can avoid unnecessary idling, the more you can reduce the effects of global warming.

Some people believe they need to warm up the car by letting it idle for a minute or longer. But it is better to start off your car slowly and ease it along without revving the engine. The car is usually safe to drive in a few seconds and it warms twice as fast while it is driven.

URGENT: Do You Think Global Warming Is a Hoax? Vote Here Now!

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Idling a car occurs when the car is stopped and the engine is still running. This can't be avoided when drivers are stuck in traffic, but idling releases pollutants that can contribute to global warming.
cars, global warming, idling
Sunday, 22 March 2015 08:03 AM
Newsmax Media, Inc.

Sign up for Newsmax’s Daily Newsletter

Receive breaking news and original analysis - sent right to your inbox.

(Optional for Local News)
Privacy: We never share your email address.

PLEASE NOTE: All information presented on is for informational purposes only. It is not specific medical advice for any individual. All answers to reader questions are provided for informational purposes only. All information presented on our websites should not be construed as medical consultation or instruction. You should take no action solely on the basis of this publication’s contents. Readers are advised to consult a health professional about any issue regarding their health and well-being. While the information found on our websites is believed to be sensible and accurate based on the author’s best judgment, readers who fail to seek counsel from appropriate health professionals assume risk of any potential ill effects. The opinions expressed in and do not necessarily reflect those of Newsmax Media. Please note that this advice is generic and not specific to any individual. You should consult with your doctor before undertaking any medical or nutritional course of action.


Interest-Based Advertising | Do not sell or share my personal information

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved
Download the NewsmaxTV App
Get the NewsmaxTV App for iOS Get the NewsmaxTV App for Android Scan QR code to get the NewsmaxTV App
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved