Monday, April 11, 2011

Car-Free Carpool

I remember growing up in the 1950s and 60s, in the suburbs of Philadelphia, Abington Township.   We all went to neighborhood elementary schools that were between a half a mile to 3/4 of a mile on average .  The children walked to school (no matter what the weather), and many walked home for lunch, and walked home in the afternoon.  Most of the time there was no adult supervision except for the crossing guards.  We played outside until around 5:00 when the firehouse whistle would go off and you rushed home to make it before dinner was served.  Times have changed, but the article below made me think about how our children get to schools today.

According to an article in the April 2010 issue of Good Housekeeping magazine, about half of kids ages 6 to 12 who live a quarter to a  half mile from school travel there via car, says the Department of Transportation.  These mini trips can add up, especially when vehicles idle in pickup/drop-off lanes.  So if your family lives near school, round up parents to supervise group walks or bike rides. If half the students at an average-size elementary school made car-less commutes, it could save over 39 tons of greenhouse gas emissions a year, or the carbon-removing abilities of 1,000 trees.


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