Harrogate residents encouraged to leave their car at home for 'Car Free Friday'
Zero Carbon Harrogate is launching a ‘Car Free Friday’ campaign on Friday, October 8, where residents across the Harrogate District will be encouraged to leave their car at home to help reduce carbon emissions.
Harrogate’s leading bus operator, The Harrogate Bus Company, is backing the new initiative by offering a two for one travel offer on Fridays.
Harrogate Bus Company Chief Executive Alex Hornby said: “It’s vital that as a community we do all we can to reduce carbon emissions.
“I am proud to be part of the district’s Climate Change Coalition Board, as we work together to find sustainable answers to the growing issue of air pollution where we live.
“Our proposals to fully convert our bus fleet to zero-emission electric power in the coming years will make a significant contribution, but right now we can all do our bit to drive down carbon emissions by signing up to the campaign and pledge to leave the car at home for just one day a week.
"As well as the benefit to our local environment, choosing the bus makes sense in lots more ways - it's a lot less stressful than driving, and with a full day's travel anywhere for two people travelling together within Harrogate, Knaresborough, Wetherby and as far as Harewood and Ripley on the 36 at only £4.70 on Car Free Friday's, it's a lot cheaper than driving into town and paying for parking."
Zero Carbon Harrogate brings together a group of residents across the Harrogate District to support a low-carbon sustainable economy, with the aim of making the area a net zero carbon community by 2030.
The campaigners say cars and the congestion that they cause are one of the biggest contributors to carbon emissions, making up 49 per cent of total emissions in the Harrogate District - a figure which places Harrogate 28 per cent above the national average.
With world leaders due to meet in Glasgow at the end of the month for COP26, the United Nations Climate Change Conference, local campaigners hope increased focus on the impact of carbon emissions will persuade more people in Harrogate to leave their cars behind.
Zero Carbon Harrogate Chair, Jemima Parker, said: “We are delighted to be launching the Car Free Fridays initiative with the support of The Harrogate Bus Company, Harrogate Borough Council and Bettys and Taylors.
“Carbon emissions from travel make up a big chunk of the district’s emissions, so every journey where we can leave the car at home is a win for our positive climate action.
"We’re encouraging local residents to have a day a week where they work from home or use a different mode of transport to get to work, school or the shops.
“As well as giving much needed carbon emissions reductions, Car Free Fridays can help to improve local air quality and therefore, health.
“Walking, using a scooter or bike can also help us with our physical and mental health and the bus is a very sociable option.
“There are always going to be some people who need to use the car for some journeys, but most of us can pick up the Car Free Fridays habit and start the weekends knowing we have done the planet and our neighbours a favour.”
The Harrogate Bus Company is offering a full day’s travel for two people travelling together for £4.70 as part of ‘Car Free Fridays’.
Sign up to the Zero Carbon Harrogate campaign pledge by visiting: https://www.zerocarbonharrogate.org.uk/carfreefridays