Talk to your city about an idling ordinance

Last month Governor Herbert signed into law 15 new clean air bills, including a bill by Rep. Patrice Arent that will make anti-idling ordinances easier to enforce. At the ceremonial bill signing, the Governor urged Utah municipalities to do more for sustainability and clean air. Idling ordinances are not about punishing community members, but rather about educating people about the harms of idling and changing behaviors for the long term to reduce toxic air pollution that threatens our health, lifestyle and economy.

Idling builds up toxins outside AND inside the car, creating a health concern and possible lifelong consequences. Reducing idling reduces air pollution and saves money. Studies show that turning off your engine for even 10 seconds can reduce emissions and save fuel costs.

12 Utah cities already have anti-idling ordinances, including Salt Lake City, Park City, Logan, Alta, Holladay, Murray, Cottonwood Heights and Sandy. Your city can too!

WHAT YOU CAN DO

  • Contact your city council and mayor about passing an anti-idling ordinance in your community. Find out who represents you and what their contact info is at vote.utah.gov (enter your your home address and select “Contact my elected officials”).

Suggested talking points:

  • Stopping idling saves air pollution AND money. Studies show that turning off your engine for even 10 seconds can reduce emissions and saves gas.
  • Idling often occurs around schools where our children inhale toxic air pollution that can create significant health impacts, even from short-term exposure.
  • Idling increases pollution inside the car, as well as outside, exposing drivers and passengers to toxins that can pose immediate and long-term health consequences.
  • Idling ordinances act as an educational measure more than a punishment to help Utahns change their behaviors for the long term.

Resources:

  • UCAIR provides information about Travel-Wise tips, including this tool to calculate savings from idling less.
  • Breathe Utah provides tips for promoting idle-free awareness.
  • Utah Clean Cities offers idle-free decals, information and materials.

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