Stockholm - It's a little known fact that a glass of water can lower your fuel consumption by 10 percent. "How", you may ask? Toyota Sweden worked with creatives at Saatchi & Saatchi to come up with an ingenious way of lowering carbon dioxide emission by 2 million tons per year*. They calculated that if all drivers in Sweden placed a glass of water on their dashboard, and managed to complete their journey without spilling the water, their driving would be gentler and therefore more economical.
This unique solution is built around an iPhone application - A Glass of Water - that can be downloaded for free at Apple's App Store. The app is activated at the start of a car journey, and designed to look and act like the bird's eye view of a glass of water. The app monitors and registers the volume of water spilled during the journey, so the driver's challenge is to drive carefully enough to avoid spillage and reduce carbon emmissions. Results, stats and maps are available at the website www.aglassofwater.org, where site users can create challenges for family and friends. It is possible to participate without the iPhone app by downloading values of fuel consumption at aglassofwater.org
"The platform for the solution was determined to iPhone because it offers GPS as well as accelerometer, and is one of the market leaders. There are over half a million iPhones on the Swedish market at this time. That gives a wide range of users access and use of the app." (Ulf Winberg, CEO Toyota Sweden)
Toyota has been a forerunner in many areas regarding environmental thinking. They were the first car manufacturer to get certified as ISO 14001 compliant. Toyota has produced full hybrid cars since 1997. They are still the only car producer in Sweden that get all their new cars "clean vehicle"-classed and have, also as the only car producer in Sweden, had high demands and expectations regarding environmental thinking at their resellers.
Ulf Winberg commented: "Now we want to take the environmental work one step further by transmitting a "mental glass of water". We therefore invite all Swedes to challenge themselves, and others to lower their fuel consumption and thereby also their carbon footprint. A softer driving also lowers the risk of accidents, so that's another aspect where everyone is a winner."
* The number is taken from statistics from "Swedish Petroleum Institute" over the sales volume of petrol and diesel. In 2009 just over 4.8 million litres of petrol and just over 4.2 million litres of diesel for vehicles where sold. That answers to a carbon dioxide emission of just over 21 million tons.
A fuel consumption reduced by 10 percent equals:
- For a family that drives 15,000 km/year an annual saving of approx. 1200 SEK.
- For a taxi that drives 10,000 km/month an annual saving of approx. 15 000 SEK
- A 40-ton truck that drives 200,000 km/year an annual saving of approx. 70 000 SEK
- Almost 36,300 fewer tanker trucks in Sweden, every year.