Over the past century, the car has become a part of everyday life, a symbol of freedom for many. Unfortunately, because of poor public transport and bad planning decisions, the car is all too often the only way of getting around. As a result, our towns and cities are becoming increasingly congested and polluted, whilst the countryside remains under threat from further road building, with many communities being divided by busy roads.
Transport is the fastest growing energy-consumption sector in the UK and the number of cars on the road may double by 2025. Road transport is also the fastest growing source in the UK of carbon dioxide, the main gas causing global warming. It is therefore an area that requires great attention to reduce fuel consumption and hence pollution.
Transport pollution is emitted at ground level from a mobile source, and is therefore a larger problem than other pollution sources. As an alternative to driving the car, walking, cycling or using public transport where it is suitable and safe to do so is a better option, particularly for short trips where using the car is not really necessary and alternatives exist. Where walking or cycling is impractical, people can consider taking public transport if it is available and convenient to use. A bus full of passengers is more than twice as fuel-efficient as a family car. In addition, car sharing is an option to consider if you and your friends drive to work along similar routes.