London, 2 Oct 2006.
For immediate release.

Contact the ABD

Press Release

How Green Are Politicians?
Politicians of all colours are revealing a worrying degree of naiveté over the environmental credentials of cars, says the Association of British Drivers.

Chris Grayling's call for motorists to take the green option, at his party's Annual Conference, comes with the reassurance that the Conservative Party is not about to become anti-driver or anti-car as they know that cars are a vital part of everyday life. The ABD agrees with this statement of obvious truth and trusts that the common sense behind it will still be crystal clear to the electorate's 30 million motorists at the time of the next General Election.
Yet the messages given out, in advice and by example, are wrong. Even within the politicised science of climate change, where natural plant food gas (carbon dioxide) is used as an eco-yardstick, choosing a hybrid or any other car based solely on emission of carbon dioxide during on-road use is actually an ecologically unsound decision.
ABD Environment Spokesman Ben Adams explains:
"Politicians are using carbon dioxide emissions as their criterion of choice. Accordingly they should use the dust-to-dust figures for a particular car, not figures based solely on emissions when in use. True vehicle life cycle energy costs — and hence total carbon dioxide emissions — are very different from those used in misguided attempts to force lifestyle changes on the public. For example the total life cycle energy costs of a Hummer H3 4x4 are 40% less than those of a typical hybrid car. Environmentalists would regard a Hummer as somehow obscene, yet like most 4x4s it has a smaller carbon footprint than hybrids, and by a wide margin."
"If we can't trust politicians to take the trouble to get the basics right on something as simple as carbon dioxide emissions, why should we trust them on the larger scale, more complex, and potentially more costly environmental issues? They seem keener to make politically correct gestures than to get the science right. CNW Marketing Research have carried out detailed vehicle life cycle energy calculations, this research is what politicians should be pointing us to if they are genuinely interested in reducing carbon dioxide emissions. Even then, if they believe their own rhetoric on carbon dioxide, they may wish to think again in terms of the Little Ice Age which independent scientists warn is due to cool our climate starting around 2012."


Notes for Editors:
Report from CNW Marketing Research Inc: the energy cost per mile of a Hummer H3 4x4, in terms of dust-to-dust energy consumption & allied carbon emissions, is 40% lower than the Toyota Prius and Honda Civic Hybrid
Origin and implications of imminent climate cooling: Not Gridlock, Freezelock


Notes for Editors