Google is to use its Maps app to direct drivers along more “eco-friendly” routes to reduce the carbon footprint of car journeys, and as part of its pledge to be carbon-free by 2030.
The new AI-driven model will default to the most environmentally friendly journey based on fuel consumption, after analysing factors like road incline and traffic congestion.
An eco-friendly route will automatically present itself when it has roughly the same arrival time as the fastest option. If this greener journey is due to take significantly longer, though, drivers will have the choice to compare predicted emissions with quicker routes, leaving it up to them to select a chosen path.
Google said the feature would launch later this year in the United States and will eventually be rolled out in other countries, as part of its commitment to help combat climate change through its services.
Google Maps app users will also be able to compare car, bike, public transport and other travel options in one place without having to toggle between tabs.
Drivers will also have the choice to opt out entirely if they’d prefer to receive only the fastest journeys available.
The tech company said it’s using insights from the US Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Lab to create the new feature.
Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief. She writes about lifestyle including sustainable and green living.