Car dealership launches green initiative

Mar 19, 2008

The first step, introduced this month, is for Mercedes-Benz of Milton Keynes to purchase ‘carbon credits’ on behalf of customers for every new car sold in the Mercedes-Benz 4-Matic range, the Mercedes-Benz ML-Class, GL-Class and R-Class ranges, calculated on the first 36,000 miles.

Final calculations are also being made to purchase ‘carbon credits’ for their entire demonstrator and service loan fleet of cars, based at the dealership in Kingston.

The dealership is working with The CarbonNeutral Company, which supplies the ‘carbon credits’ from two on-going climate friendly projects. It is a leading campaigner for voluntary action on climate change for businesses and individuals and has worked with thousands of individuals and companies, providing carbon offset and climate-consulting services.

The Kotmar Waste Heat Recovery Project is taking place in India. It captures waste heat at a steel plant and uses it to produce electricity, which is subsequently fed to a local grid and has resulted in emission reductions of 74,263 tonnes of carbon dioxide.

The second project is the Rhine-Ruhr Waste Gas Power Project in Germany, which captures methane gas from three abandoned coalmines.

Methane is 21 times more potent than carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas. The project will generate emission reductions of 385,500 tCO2.

John Ferguson, divisional customer relations manager at Mercedes-Benz of Milton Keynes, said: “In 2005 the Department for Transport calculated that cars emitted 69.9 million tonnes of CO2 compared to domestic and international aviation emitting 37.5 million tonnes. However, travel by car is an essential part of our business and personal lives and we are working closely with The CarbonNeutral Company to carbon offset our vehicles.”

Sue Welland, founder and creative director of The CarbonNeutral Company, said, “Offsetting is a valuable way to reduce emissions, support new technology and to promote a more sustainable future for all.”

Mercedes-Benz of Milton Keynes in consultation with the CarbonNeutral Company, has published five top green driving tips to reduce your carbon emissions.

CHECK YOUR TYRE PRESSURE
You should regularly check that you have the correct tyre pressure as under-inflated tyres will cause your engine to work harder, burn more fuel and this means you are increasing the amount of CO2 emissions your vehicle is producing. You can save money too as this simple step will help make your tyres last longer and a reduction in fuel intake means less costs.

Under-inflated tyres can increase emissions by up to five per cent (Car Plus Trust) therefore driving for 65 miles with your tyres at the correct pressure could save 1kg of carbon dioxide.

REGULAR SERVICING & MAINTENANCE
By ensuring your vehicle is regularly serviced you will help maintain its performance and avoid unnecessary fuel consumption.

REDUCE THE WEIGHT IN YOUR CAR
Unnecessary items, such as golf clubs or the spare buggy in the boot, which seem to travel when they do not need to be there on particular car journeys. Less weight in the car equals a reduction in fuel consumption which results in less CO2 emissions produced.

WATCH YOUR SPEED
Keep your speed at a lower level and be consistent with your speed. If you accelerate rapidly, this will directly increase the amount of CO2 emissions and you will also use more fuel.

Driving at 70mph will use up to 25% more in fuel compared with 50mph;

Driving at 85mph will use up to 25% more in fuel compared with 70mph;

Driving at 50-60 mph will minimise your CO2 emissions.
(Statistics from the Centre for Alternative Technology)

SHARE YOUR CAR JOURNEYS
By sharing car journeys you or your colleagues and friends not only save wear and tear on the vehicles that are not being used, you save money on fuel and help to reduce CO2 emissions. Also you can catch up with your colleagues face to face and not by mobile!

Save over a tonne of CO2 per year and reduce your fuel costs by car sharing with a colleague who lives in your area.

Mercedes-Benz of Milton Keynes has provided a Mercedes-Benz A-Class for Willen Hospice to support the hospice’s outreach work in the Milton Keynes community.

Dealership managing director Warren Brearley said: “We previously provided a smart car for the Hospice to use but we believe that the extra space provided by the Mercedes-Benz A-Class will be useful to Willen. The staff here decide which charities we will support each year and Willen Hospice is always on the ‘must do’ list.”

The relationship between dealership and hospice began in 2005 through Willen’s retiring chief executive Chris Eyes. His successor, chief executive designate Paul Hinson said: “We are always grateful for corporate support and I am truly amazed by the generosity of Mercedes-Benz of Milton Keynes.

“We are very proud to be associated with Mercedes-Benz of Milton Keynes and we thank everyone at the dealership for their support.”

Pictured: Paul Hinson (left) and Warren Brearley.

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