Idle thoughts on red lights, traffic flow and pollution
While I applaud the city for recently making their anti-idling bylaw more stringent (decreased permitted idling time from three minutes to one minute) to help reduce pollution. I wonder if there are other ways that the city could make changes to help reduce pollution from cars.
I was driving down Bathurst St. last week at around 1 a.m. and somehow I had to stop at every traffic light from Steeles Ave.all the way down to south of Lawrence Ave.
As I was sitting there idling my car at each of the red lights I kept thinking about the amount of pollution that I was creating. I could understand having to stop and start if I was driving in rush hour traffic, however, I was coming down Bathurst at one in the morning!
There was no more than a handful of other cars on the road and I waited at a number of lights where no other cars or pedestrians crossed my path. I think if we could figure out some way to reduce the amount of unnecessary stopping and starting on major streets when traveling straight in one direction, we would be able to probably reduce our pollution by even more then the savings in emissions from reducing the amount of time one can idle their car.
I understand that if I'm driving along and making a number of turns and stops it will be inevitable that I will get some red lights, but when traveling down a major road with two lanes of traffic in each direction, there must be some way to set the traffic lights so that once you get a green light you can continue to get green lights after that if driving at a continuous speed.
I think the city, its councillors and civil servants should be looking at every way to reduce the amount of pollution we emit when driving as the way our city and region has developed often makes it necessary to drive places instead of walking or taking public transit, the ideal, less polluting alternatives.