Transportation / Mobility

March 29, 2006


Vehicle Idling Restrictions Spreading in Japan

Keywords: Local government Transportation / Mobility 

While energy consumption in the transport sector in Japan has increased by more than 20 percent since fiscal 1990, with private cars mostly responsible, a move to encourage drivers to stop idling while not in motion is spreading nationwide. Energy consumption in the transport sector is a major source of carbon dioxide emissions that contribute to the global warming.

The Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport set up a subsidy system to promote vehicles with "idling-stop" devices installed and has been holding promotional events, seminars and test-drive events for this purpose. More and more prefectural and municipal governments have also enacted ordinances for discouraging idling, as a means of protecting the environment and citizens' lives from air pollution from nitrogen oxides, foul odors and noise.

For example, Kuki City, Saitama Prefecture, enforced an ordinance to restrict idling on August 1, 2001. It requires all car-owners and drivers in the city to switch off their engines wherever and whenever they park and leave their cars. Taxi and bus drivers who are waiting for passengers are also subject to the ordinance. Exceptions include parking for less than five-minutes when loading and unloading, parking for passengers to board or alight, and stops that are necessary to protect human lives and health.

Posted: 2006/03/29 06:39:32 PM
Japanese version