August 6, 2008
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
TRY AN ALTERNATIVE TO DRIVING
TO WORK ALONE, AND WIN A PRIZE
Charlotte, NC – "Don't Drive Day" is Wednesday, August 13, 2008, and citizens who choose to commute to work by bus, LYNX blue line, carpool, vanpool, walking, telecommuting, or riding a bike will be eligible to win an electric lawnmower, an iPod Touch and other prizes. The City of Charlotte, Mecklenburg County NC Air Awareness and Clean Air Works! are cosponsoring "Don't Drive Day" to promote alternatives to driving to work alone as a way to beat high gas prices, and help clean our air.
Eligible commuters can e-mail how they got to work on August 13, to
firstname.lastname@example.org and are automatically entered to win prizes. Entries are due by noon on August 14, and winners must live or work in the Charlotte ozone non-attainment area, which includes Mecklenburg, Union, Cabarrus, Rowan, Iredell, Lincoln, Gaston and York (SC) counties.
As gasoline prices have increased this year, citizens and businesses have felt the pinch of these higher costs in their pocketbooks and their budgets. "Riding CATS buses, LYNX blue line, or vanpooling are excellent ways to offset high gas prices and improve the quality of our air at the same time," said Olaf Kinard, director of Marketing and Communication for CATS.
Alternatives to driving to work alone can also play a role in the region's air quality problems. "A key component to improving the Charlotte area's air quality, especially for ground-level ozone and particulate matter, is to reduce the amount of air pollution produced by vehicles," said Don Willard, director of Mecklenburg County Air Quality.
In August 2007, the Charlotte region had 12 days that exceeded federal health standards for ground-level ozone, including the first Code Purple (Very Unhealthy) day since 2000. "Ozone pollution presents a serious threat to the health and quality of life of people living in the Charlotte area. "Don't Drive Day" gives citizens in the region an opportunity to help reduce ozone pollution by trying a cleaner way to get to work," said Megan Green of the North Carolina Air Awareness program.
For more information go to airquality.charmeck.org and click on "Don't Drive Day."