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Google Maps will soon suggest routes with cleaner air

By SAAB LARIOSA Published Apr 01, 2021 1:21 pm

Google Maps is rolling out a feature that suggests alternate routes for drivers to emit lesser carbon emissions, and for people to find areas with cleaner air. 

Using analytics from their weather and environmental agencies, the app will depend on traffic congestion and road conditions in offering motorists routes that lower their vehicle’s carbon footprint. 

If the eco-friendly way adds more time to get to the destination, the app will point out the difference in carbon emissions and let the user decide for themselves. For pedestrians, the app will also add an air quality toggle to show how clean the air is in a certain outdoor area.

The carbon emission feature will roll out this June in the UK, Germany, France, Spain, and the Netherlands, with more countries coming soon. Meanwhile, the U.S. will first get first dibs on picking which routes will have cleaner air, with data coming from their own Department of Energy National Renewable Energy Lab.

“Cities around the world have established low emission zones — areas that restrict polluting vehicles like certain diesel cars or cars with specific emissions stickers —  to help keep the air clean,” Google shared in a blog update.

“To support these efforts, we’re working on alerts to help drivers better understand when they’ll be navigating through one of these zones.”

Photo from Henry Perks via Unsplash and Google