Now that we have sufficiently debunked the myth that idling a car for five minutes (specifically in the winter) is in fact not any better for the vehicle than turning it on, waiting thirty seconds and then driving, we can start talking about idling a car in general. According to the California Energy Commission, “For every two minutes a car is idling, it uses about the same amount of fuel it takes to go about one mile. Research indicates that the average person idles their car five to 10 minutes a day.” With that in mind, we’ve got some serious rethinking to do in our current mindset when it comes to waste emissions and how much of it we are producing.

spare the air charleston scA school in Charleston, South Carolina has received an award from the state for being smarter about how the parents of these children drop-off and pick their kids up from school every day. They have told parents that are transporting their kids two and from the academy to not sit with their car idling, specifically when they are waiting for the students to be released from the building each day. The school does not have a carpool line and even suggests alternative modes of transportation (or lack-of) should be considered. This includes the standard walking and bike riding for those who are close enough, but also any other method of getting their preschoolers to and from school that does not require the use of a vehicle. Might we suggest picking up roller-blading? Or for the adults that still have them, roller-skating even? What about scooters?

This is wonderful news as it gets kids thinking early on in life about how to cut down on harmful practices to the environment. Other methods such as recycling debris instead of tossing their waste into trash bins or dumpsters will be probably considered (unless they are a dumpster rental with the explicit plan to head for a recycling center, of course). Also, they will certainly be more aware of how their actions affect the planet and what they can do to minimize these effects. Alternative forms of waste removal will be more popular as these kids have been trained from a young age to know that every little bit helps in the effort to save the planet. The “Spare the Air” campaign has its own website where you can find more information one better practices, get involved in the fight, and learn about various aspects of preservation. There is a wealth of knowledge as well as some great tips to be discovered.

It’s nice to see that this Charleston, South Carolina preschool has been able to do something great and show that all it takes is a few simple steps and anyone can make a difference. If more schools across the country got involved in “Spare the Air” it would be wonderful training for the younger generation in our country.