Fight Global Warming with Car Nav Systems

Global warming is a big issue.  Well, at least to many it is.  Nissan wants to use auto navigation systems to keep traffic moving around snarl-ups, reducing carbon emissions and increasing MPG in the process.

The Japanese automaker has launched a major effort to better exploit navigation systems--which are essentially on-board computers--and contemporary communications infrastructures to improve the safety of their cars and boost gas mileage, company executives said this week at Ceatec, the large Japanese trade show taking place outside of Tokyo.

One application, currently being tested on taxis in Beijing, feeds current traffic data gathered by sensors in other cars on the road to drivers to help them avoid traffic jams.

In early tests, Nissan says the application cuts carbon dioxide emissions by about kilogram a day. That's because driving at a steady pace, rather than in stop-and-go traffic, improves mileage.

When one thinks about it, the benefits are obvious.  However only, of course, if the information supplied to the navigation system is accurate and timely.