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Rally leaves trees in its wake

Rally leaves trees in its wake

Wellington Mayor Kerry Prendergast, Motor Industry Association Chief Executive Perry Kerr and the Chief Executive of the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA) Heather Staley donned gumboots in Wellington's CBD this morning to plant a tree with a purpose.

This morning's tree planting is the first of 50 trees to be planted around Wellington as part of EECA's drive to make last week's EnergyWise Rally a 'carbon dioxide neutral' event. The 42 cars involved in the Rally's 1500 kilometre North Island circuit emitted around 11 tonnes of CO2.

Heather Staley said the tree planting is the EnergyWise Rally's way of taking responsibility for energy use and the associated carbon dioxide emissions, which are harmful to our environment.

"The carbon dioxide emitted from the average family car over the course of a year is substantial. To put it in context, if the average family wants to compensate the environment for emissions from their vehicle, they would have to plant seven trees every year for the life of the car!"

150 trees in total will be planted in Wellington, Palmerston North and Auckland to make the EnergyWise Rally more than 'carbon dioxide neutral'. 50 trees are required to make the event 'carbon dioxide neutral'.

"The EnergyWise Rally highlighted the savings that can be made by both driving and buying wisely. The cars entered in the rally use the latest fuel economy technology and the results achieved were astounding. The average family could save up to $670 a year on fuel by driving efficiently and buying a fuel-efficient car like those that were in the rally. For families with an 'average' car, just driving more efficiently can save them up to $400 on fuel per year.

"The tree planting is our way of leading by example in overcoming the impact of our activities on the environment. If New Zealanders buy wisely and drive wisely we will make real progress towards achieving a sustainable energy future," Ms Staley said.

Driving tips and results from the EnergyWise Rally can be found on

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