Environmental Benefits of Donating A Car

Black van with a trailer | Breast Cancer Car Donations

Photo by Kenny Eliason under Unsplash License 

It’s not uncommon for eco-conscious people to drive old cars. It’s not because they can’t afford a new one. It’s simply a matter of conviction: The longer you can keep an item in use and out of the landfill, the better for the planet. Right? Well, in the case of your old car, this may not actually be true.

The Effects of Used and Unused Cars

Your car is a little different from something like kitchen cabinets or even a skateboard. With the latter, almost all its environmental impact is tied up in its manufacture in the form of raw materials and embodied energy — the energy used in making the object and delivering it to your home. Therefore, it makes sense to get as much use as you possibly can out of it. If you could extend the average life expectancy of kitchen cabinets by even a year or two, you would save a significant amount of resources.

With cars, it’s still very important to be respectful of the embodied energy. However, the car also consumes energy directly. And as it turns out, up to 75 percent of a car’s lifetime carbon emissions can be traced not to its manufacture, but to its operation — the fuel it burns along with the energy used to produce and transport that fuel.

In effect, the older a car gets, the more important its fuel efficiency becomes because in an older car such a small percentage of its total energy use is tied up in its manufacture. At some point in its life, trading it in for a newer, more fuel-efficient vehicle will prove to be the more environmentally responsible choice.

By the time it gets to that point, your old car may not be as green as you think for other reasons. Older cars built under less stringent fuel emissions standards tend to burn dirtier and have a more negative impact on air quality than newer ones. Also, as cars age they will often develop fluid leaks. Dripping oil, hydraulic fluid or other chemicals into the environment is not exactly eco-friendly.

How Car Donations Can Be Environmentally Friendly

Even if you drive a high-mileage older car like one of the early hybrids, there will come a time when it will need frequent enough repairs that maintaining it becomes just as costly as purchasing a new or lightly used one.

You probably won’t get much for selling it, and besides, you’ll just be passing on the problem to someone else — someone who likely won’t know how to recycle a car or even care about making sure it is disposed of in an environmentally responsible manner.

Finally, consider the old car that is simply allowed to sit unused. While you may not think of it as being harmful since a parked car doesn’t create emissions, it will eventually release the aforementioned chemicals into the soil. Plus, it’s an eyesore that your neighbors — or your spouse — probably don’t appreciate. So, what do you do with it? One excellent solution is to donate your car to charity.

How to Donate Your Car

About 65 percent of the average vehicle is recyclable. Car donation can ensure that your car is properly recycled and disposed. However, it’s important to choose a reputable organization to donate to — one that will re-sell or recycle your car in a responsible manner.

Breast Cancer Car Donations exists exactly for that purpose. Our mission is to assist Breast Cancer nonprofits in raising funds by handling car donations on their behalf. It’s an efficient system and is also eco-friendly because we take care to assess each car we pick up. If a car is still in good enough shape to sell responsibly, we see that it’s cleaned, sold, and the proceeds distributed to the Breast Cancer charities we serve. If not, we ensure that any salvageable parts or materials in the vehicle are recovered, and the remainder disposed responsibly.

The cost of car donation to you is zero. All you have to do is fill out our quick online form, and we will be in touch with you as soon as possible. Or, give us a call at 866-540-5069. We’ll arrange for a tow truck to come and take your car at a time that is convenient for you. Once it’s sold or recycled, you’ll receive a receipt for your tax-deductible donation.

Don’t let your old car be a drag on the planet. https://www.cardonations4cancer.org/donate-now/!