Rule No.1 for Dating a Hot Environmentalist: Don't Idle

Actress Rachelle Lefevre goes toe-to-toe with car idlers in humorous PSA. Photo: Screen capture/YouTube

Actress Rachelle Lefevre goes toe-to-toe with car idlers in humorous PSA. Photo: Screen capture/YouTube

Actress Rachelle Lefevre has graced the big screen in movies including Twilight and showed up in television shows such as CSI and How I Met Your Mother, but this beautiful blue-eyed Canadian still has her share of first-date fiascos.

Especially when it comes to idling.

In a recent public service announcement video, Lefevre, an environmentalist, shares an amusing take on one of her first-date turn-offs: when a guy arrives to pick her up and leaves his car idling in the driveway.

Despite the prospective suitor’s dashing good looks, Lefevre, annoyed with his ignorance of how even a few seconds of idle exhaust can harm the environment, turns around and goes back inside. Date over.

Finally, A Good Date
Luckily for Lefevre, the guy who shows up a few nights later is much more savvy when it comes to environmental responsibility. This time she doesn’t retreat back inside and instead heads out on the date.

In a guest column for The Huffington Post, Lefevre recalls her inspiration for the subject of the PSA. Growing up in Canada, she remembers the freezing-morning tradition of running outside to start the car so it would be toasty and warm when it was time to leave for the day.

“The view of the car just sitting there, the exhaust spewing light grayish fumes into the air, looked wasteful and dirty. I hadn’t yet declared myself an ‘environmentalist,’ and the term ‘climate change’ hadn’t been coined but I’m pretty sure the sight of those neighborhood cars prompted one of my first, early utterances of the question, ‘Isn’t that bad for the environment?’ ” she writes.

Now living in Los Angeles, Lefevre says she does what she can to lessen her carbon footprint, by doing things like keeping her A/C at a reasonable temperature setting. She didn’t say, however, if the PSA was a real-life reenactment.

Don’t be an Idle Motorist
According to the Consumer Energy Center’s research, for every two minutes a car is idling, it uses about the same amount of fuel it takes to go about one mile. Research indicates that the average person idles their car five to 10 minutes a day.

Here are a few other myths that the The Consumer Energy Center dispels:

• The engine should be warmed up before driving. Reality: Idling is not an effective way to warm up your vehicle, even in cold weather.

• Idling is good for your engine. Reality: Excessive idling can actually damage your engine components, including cylinders, spark plugs, and exhaust systems.

• Shutting off and restarting your vehicle is hard on the engine and uses more gas than if you leave it running. Reality: Frequent restarting has little impact on engine components like the battery and the starter motor.

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