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Council staff swap car journeys to help "Change the World"

Issued: 22 Jun 2010

Staff of The Highland Council are again entering into the spirit of Change Your World Week (28 June - 2 July), by walking, cycling, car-sharing or using public transport to get to work.

Many already travel sustainably, while others have agreed to swap one car trip this week to help reduce carbon emissions.

It is estimated that one in four car journeys is less than two miles. These short journeys are the easiest for people to swap to active travel.

Malina MacDonald, Council Travel Plan Co-ordinator, is leading by example by combining walking, cycling, car-sharing and using public transport to get to work this week.

She said: "If we all take this easy action and swap a trip for a sustainable mode, we can cut our travel emissions that week by between 10 - 20%, whilst also improving our health and saving money."

"A great deal of staff already reduce their carbon footprint by travelling to work and for Council business in a sustainable way. We hope that those people who have been persuaded to swap a car journey this week will continue to travel sustainably when they can."

Stuart Black, Director of Planning and Development, tries to cycle the 3 mile round trip to work 3-4 times a week. Stuart chooses this mode as it helps the environment, keeps him fit and enables him to use pedestrian crossings over the River Ness.

Andy Hume, waste management officer, commutes 3 miles (one-way) to Dingwall and cycles most days. He limits business travel to essential journeys only, uses the train to get to Glasgow and Edinburgh if the meeting timings are convenient and combines as many tasks as possible. Andy travels sustainably because it's greener, cheaper and helps him keep fit.

Julia Nelson, health development officer, commutes the 27 miles (one-way) from Barbaraville to Inverness every day. When possible, she takes the bus to Inverness and then walks the 25 minutes to her office. Julia takes the bus and walks to reduce CO2 emissions, to get some exercise and because it's more relaxing than driving.

Ailsa Villegas, sustainable development officer, commutes the 34 miles (one-way) from Aviemore to Inverness and tries to take the train once a week, working from home two days. Taking the train is less stressful, lets her get some exercise walking to the rail stations and enables her husband to use share their car.

For business travel, Ailsa tries to travel by train or car share and prefers to teleconference rather than travel as it saves so much time.

Ailsa hopes to cycle the 34 miles to work one day during the 'Change Your World' week 28 June - 2 July.

Sheila McRobert, administrative assistant, commutes the 35 miles (one-way) to work in Inverness from Grantown by car-sharing with three colleagues. She car-shares because it saves money, time and CO2 and is more convenient than public transport.

Steve McDermot, waste management officer, made the decision to sell one of his family cars to save money and reduce CO2 emissions. Steve now uses a mix of bus, bike and car-sharing to travel the 12 miles to work in Inverness. He says these options are not just better for the environment but cheaper than driving and keep him fit. He also tries to cycle for Council business and takes the train when travelling to the central belt.

© 2010 Highland Public Services Partnership.
Project part-financed by the European Union (European Regional Development Fund) within the INTERREG IIIB Northern Periphery Programme