13th Annual Governor Declaration for Idle Free in Utah September 2020 and the 2020-2021 Winter Season
Date: Tuesday, September 8th
Time of the event: 11:00 a.m. – Noon
Location: Virtual Event
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 4th, 2020
Thirteenth Annual Governor’s Idle Free Declaration
September marks the 13th Annual Governor Declaration for Idle Free in Utah September 2020 and the 2020-2021 Winter Season in Utah. The Governor’s Declaration is currently signed by 76 Utah Mayors who represent more than ¾ of the state’s population. The highly anticipated event will be held on Tuesday, September 8 from 11:00 a.m. to noon via a virtual webinar. Key leaders and advocates for in the Idle Free will share their stories, work and support of this unique Utah campaign for clean air and zero emissions
Over the past thirteen years, the Idle Free Education programs continue to grow and are supported by Utah Clean Cities, UCAIR, Breathe Utah, Utah Society for Environmental Education and the State Health Department’s Asthma Program and Recess Guide. To date, these grass-roots programs have directly reached more than 15,000 students, and growing, across 425 schools.
“You know you are reaching a tipping point when nearly every school child in Utah is passionate about idle-free. These young stewards have taken the original message and made it into curbside campaigns through art, song, poetry, personal narrative and life-long commitment to clean air,” noted Tammie Bostick, Executive Director of Utah Clean Cities Coalition. Bostick added, “And to further our coalitions’ commitment to idle free, Utah Clean Cities is launching an innovative fleet program, Beyond Zero Green Fleets. This program can literally take the pollution solution to beyond zero emissions with carbon benefiting models”
This program recognizes the Utah cities that are officially idle free. To date, the cities of Park City, Salt Lake City, Alta, Holladay, Logan, Cottonwood Heights, Murray, Springdale, Sandy and Draper City all have Idle Free City Ordinances. During these last few weeks of summer, the air quality in Salt Lake County has become extremely unhealthy including high ozone levels,
PM2.5 and smoke from wildfires. The resulting emissions have left at-risk groups and even some of the healthiest individuals in danger. Clean air can be determined by individuals and organizations who make conscious decisions to limit their emissions. Local government entities, businesses, fleets and many Utah communities will be in partnership with this annual reminder to stop unnecessary idling.
Dr. Kerry Kelly, Assistant Professor, Chemical Engineering at the University of Utah highlights where change for better air quality begins, stating that, “Making changes takes leadership, that means personal, community, and business leadership, and I am excited to be part of the effort to reduce idling.”
Idling vehicles emit particulate matter and other pollutants that are known to cause adverse health effects. Vehicle exhaust makes up about half of the air pollution in Utah, and unnecessary idling contributes a significant amount of emissions into our air shed each day. Air quality is a complex issue. There is no “magic bullet” solution to solving our air pollution challenges.
Thom Carter, Executive Director of Utah Clean Air Partnership, UCAIR, knows how partnerships lead the way: “We applaud the work of 76 cities and towns and all the school districts that have adopted Idle Free ordinances. Much of this can be accredited to the hard work of Utah Clean Cities Coalition, the 2020 UCAIR Community Partner of the Year, led by Tammie Bostick. Now, we call other cities, towns and school districts to join the Turn Your Key, Be Idle Free movement. We challenge organizations, businesses and families to identify their own clean air practice solutions.”
This is the month we once again initiate the beloved Idle Free Campaign and announce the fact that this is Utah’s official Idle Free Season 2020-2021. After a summer of poor air quality due to wildfires, emissions, and other climate disruptions, it is especially important to commit to right action. You may ask yourself as an individual, as a member of your community and a citizen of the state of Utah what you can do? It is simple. Turn Your Key Be Idle Free. It is a ten-second commitment, and everyone can do it. We know, we commit, and are all in this together.
Press Opportunities: If you were unable to attend this virtual event but are interested in event coverage, contact Emily Paskett from Utah Clean Cities for interview opportunities firstname.lastname@example.org.
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About Utah Clean Cities
The mission of the Utah Clean Cities Coalition is to advance the energy, economic, and environmental security of the United States by supporting local decisions to adopt practices that reduce the use of petroleum in the transportation sector. Working closely with the Department of Energy’s Clean Cities programs, federal and state government, as well as our local stakeholders, we leverage our resources to bring funding into Utah to support the development and deployment of advanced fuel infrastructure and vehicles with an emphasis on renewable energies and technologies. We are committed to expanding transportation modeling by offering consultation services to access proven, state-of-the-art technological vehicles and equipment with proven return on investment for smart mobility fleets. We are here to support actionable steps to meet the challenges of our carbon-constrained world, to meet state and federal mandates, and implement sound business practices to tackle the serious non-attainment conditions in our state.