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Nonprofit Connects City Parking Plans With Fuel Waste

— Public policy that on the surface seems unrelated to fuel may be encouraging drivers to use more gas. A new report from think tank Next 10 concludes that those policies are bad for California's environmental health.

Municipal rules aimed at dealing with problems like parking may have unexpected consequences on the state's environment.

Photo credit: Sandy Hemsley

The report highlights a number of ways that state or local rules actually encourage people to drive.

The study found that when creating parking plans, municipalities tend to favor cars when drawing up plans in congested areas.

And car insurance doesn't reward people who drive less. Next 10's founder, Noel Perry, says local communities can have an impact on the bigger picture.

"What they found was, if the city or municipality decided to change certain policies on parking, it would actually reduce the amount of driving," Perry said.

The report found other items that warrant attention: aviation landing rules that require a stepped descent, home mortgage deductions, which encourage larger homes and infrastructure funding that promotes development.

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