Camper, Car, Environment, Motorbike

Is your tire pressure relevant to the climate?

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The impact of tire pressure on the climate? Well, there is. Tire pressure even deserves a place in climate policy. After all, the correct tire pressure results in far fewer CO2 emissions. Recently, the measure to inflate car tires was included in the climate agreement. It is a cost-efficient measure with a strong impact. If all cars at the European or global level drive with properly inflated tires, we prevent megatons of CO2 emissions into the atmosphere. Worthwhile, right?

What impact does correct tire pressure have?

Correctly inflated tires make a directly measurable climate contribution. Thus:

  • Reduces CO2 emissions immediately
  • Less particulate matter is released
  • Microplastics are reduced
  • There is less noise pollution from cars.

Perhaps the tool to achieve correct tire pressure? A smart tire pump. Not only are you making a direct contribution in this way, you are also clearly showing that you care about the environment. You can bet that this can also be a valuable marketing tool on your website or social media.

The different benefits at a glance

In the paragraphs below, we will briefly go through the advantages of correct tire pressure:

  • Less CO2 emissions – Under-pressure causes air pollution. A tire that is too flat consumes more fuel and each additional liter of fuel consumed equals 1.2 liters of oil. The total soon comes to 22 liters per year per car.
  • Fewer NOx emissions – An internal combustion engine causes the release of NO and NO2 (together NOx). This substance causes smog, irritated airways, affects the ozone layer, and increases the greenhouse effect. A study by TNO is clear: under-pressure causes additional NOx emissions. A diesel car with flat tires causes 0.9% extra emissions, a petrol car no less than 1.5%. You can read more about this topic in our blog on nitrogen and under-pressure.
  • Less fine particulate matter – Fine particulate matter is a collective term for all kinds of small particles in the air, from grains of sand to pieces of worn-out car tire (= tire grindings). The Open University conducted research into particulate matter and estimated that 3 to 7% of the particulate matter produced annually consists of tire wear. British research by Emissions Analytics (2020), an independent research firm, shows that car tires produce up to 1,000 times more particulate matter than gasoline and diesel engines. According to the study, harmful particles from tires are a very serious and growing environmental problem, exacerbated by the increasing popularity of large, heavy vehicles such as SUV’s and the growing demand for electric vehicles, which are heavier than standard cars because of the batteries. According to the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), several thousand people in the Netherlands live several days to months shorter each year due to short-term exposure to high concentrations of particulate matter. Research by TNO shows that no less than 3.2% of all particulate matter emissions can be prevented by driving with the correct tire pressure.
  • Less plastic soup – The images are no doubt familiar to you: the plastic in the sea is floating. Research by Arcadis (2018) shows that between 4.8 and 12.7 million tons end up in the sea every year. Tire scraps here, according to the study, account for 40% of the total. The emissions from car tires appear to be some 1,000 times greater than those from cleaning products.
  • Less wear – Well-inflated tires wear less quickly. If you know that each tire represents around 27 kg of CO2, then a correctly inflated tire causes far fewer CO2 emissions. In addition, the tire tread that is subsequently released also has an enormous impact on the environment.

So what about this climate policy?

Urgenda, a Dutch action group that wants to make the Netherlands more sustainable, together with some 700 organizations, presented a 40-point plan on June 24, 2019. This 4 years after winning the Climate Case in The Hague. This plan clearly shows that it is perfectly feasible to reduce C02 emissions by 25% by the end of 2020. Point 27 in the plan is to bring tires to the right pressure. In this blog, you can read more about the 40-point plan, which was recently converted into a 54-point plan.

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Conventional pumps do not solve underinflation

An air pump survey by CE Delft shows that 79% of users have under-inflated tires before inflating them with a traditional pump. However, after inflating, 51% still suffer from under-pressure. Even more, 37% of drivers drive away with lower tire pressure than they arrived with. Read more about this study and the opportunity to receive the data here.