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Advancing Utah's Energy Future

Study shows pollution problems with ‘cold starts,’ warming up cars

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Amy Joi O’Donoghue, Deseret News

SALT LAKE CITY — If you must drive, get on with it.

Don’t just sit there and let your car warm up — it is a machine that is designed to move after all — and all you’re doing is adding to the state’s notorious wintertime pollution problems.

Results from a 14-month collaborative study show that 75 percent of a vehicle’s combined emissions occur within the first three minutes of being started after it has sat for 12 hours for more.

It’s called a “cold start,” and if drivers want to help clean up Utah’s dirty air, they should avoid it if possible.

“Cold starts are a big issue for air quality. That is one of the reasons we say, ‘If you don’t have to start the car that day, avoid it and use another alternative,'” said Joe Thomas, director of Weber State University’s National Center for Automotive Science & Technology. (…)

For more, visit the Deseret News.