Google’s navigation app will soon direct drivers to routes that have the lowest carbon footprint as part of its efforts to combat climate change.
In a statement, the tech company revealed that it’s working on a new routing model that aims to lower fuel consumption by looking at factors like road incline and traffic congestion.
In order to achieve this, the company said that its Google Maps app will soon default to the route with the lowest carbon footprint when it has approximately the same ETA as the fastest route.
“In cases where the eco-friendly route could significantly increase your ETA, we’ll let you compare the relative CO2 impact between routes so you can choose,” the company said.
But if users still prefer the fastest route, they can simply adjust their preference in the app’s settings.
Google said that its eco-friendly routes will be available in the United States later this year “with a global expansion on the way.”
Meanwhile, the tech giant is also developing a new feature that will alert motorists if they are traveling through low emissions zones.
“From Amsterdam to Jakarta, cities around the world have established low emission zones — areas that restrict polluting vehicles like certain diesel cars or cars with specific emissions stickers — to help keep the air clean,” it said.
“To support these efforts, we’re working on alerts to help drivers better understand when they’ll be navigating through one of these zones. You can quickly know if your vehicle is allowed in the area, choose an alternative mode of transportation, or take another route,” it added.
The new feature will be available soon in Germany, the Netherlands, France, Spain and UK.