Research from the State University of New York at Buffalo shows that smart routing can reduce air pollution from vehicles by a significant amount without major increases in travel time.
A university news release states that green routing could reduce overall emissions of carbon monoxide by 27 percent for area drivers, while increasing the length of trips by an average of just 11 percent. Rerouting just one fifth of drivers — those who would benefit most from a new path — can reduce regional emissions by about 20 percent.
Though the article focuses on carbon monoxide, not carbon dioxide as stated by some US media, it does state that green rerouting of drivers can also reduce fuel consumption. None of this is surprising – GallonDaily’s owners were promoting intelligent routing as a way to reduce fuel consumption of truck fleets in the early 1990’s – but the fact that GPS systems can be applied to reduce air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from personal vehicles by such a significant amount is well worth some serious attention. As the SUNY at Buffalo study suggests, it appears to make sense to apply as much effort to implementing tools to ‘green reroute’ our existing vehicles as we are currently applying to hybrid and electric vehicle development.
The detailed paper is apparently not yet published but the University press release can be found at http://www.buffalo.edu/news/13070