It’s winter in Utah and people all over the state can see the air pollution that gets socked into the valleys during temperature inversions. According to the statewide Utah Clean Air Partnership (UCAIR), vehicles account for almost half of the typical winter workday emissions and just ten seconds of idling uses more fuel than restarting a typical car engine. That’s why Ogden-based Bank of Utah is posting new Stop Idling, Start Saving signs in all of its now 17 branches, to remind bank customers to turn off their car engines when using drive-thru windows at the bank.
Bank of Utah is launching a refreshed Stop Idling, Start Saving campaign, to coincide with Ogden City’s idle-free week taking place the first week of February. And to incentivize bank customers Feb. 3 - 14, Bank of Utah branches will randomly reward customers who turn off their car engines while being served in the bank’s drive-thru lanes, with a charming piggy bank and other free items.
In addition to the signs at the bank’s drivethrus, Bank of Utah will encourage customers and employees to Stop Idling, Start Saving with digital signs inside the branches, email messaging, Twitter and Facebook posts and electronic billboard ads. The Stop Idling, Start Saving effort is part of a year-round We Care About Clean Air initiative in partnership with UCAIR. Throughout 2020 Bank of Utah will continue to remind Utahns to reduce their vehicle air pollution, by sharing UCAIR’s clean air tips.
“Turning off your car engine while waiting in line is an easy, simple step we can all take every day,” said Bank of Utah President Douglas L. DeFries. “Doing so will save you money by burning less gas and will reduce emissions. We hope our campaign will help people become more aware of how they personally can reduce air pollution, and will encourage them to turn off their engines when going through our drive-thru lanes at our banks and restaurants, pharmacies, coffee shops and at schools when dropping off or picking up children.”
Bank of Utah has initiated other strategies to eliminate auto emissions. To reduce the number of employee miles traveled to internal commercial lending meetings, Bank of Utah implemented video conferencing in 2014. Today the company uses video conferencing for most bank meetings, trainings and even one-on-one meetings, and as a result, has saved an estimated 75,000 miles that would have been driven by its employees and more than 60,000 pounds of emitted CO2e (carbon dioxide equivalent) - which is the standard unit for measuring carbon footprints.
Bank of Utah is also reminding its customers to use the bank’s digital banking platform, which will save car trips, time and money by allowing them to make transactions online at their convenience. Digital services include online banking, mobile banking through the web site and mobile apps, remote and mobile check deposit, automatic online bill pay, account reconciliation and personal financial management.
“In our efforts to clear the air there are no perfect answers, but there are practical solutions," said Thom Carter executive director of UCAIR. "We applaud Bank of Utah for their commitment and want to remind everyone there are many, easy actions we all can take that will have epic impacts on Utah’s air. For instance, we can all reduce emissions by the way we maintain and use vehicles and the transportation choices we make such as using mass transit, carpooling and even avoiding driving altogether where possible by walking, or riding a bike or scooter instead.”