logo logo

Five Things You Need To Know About Green Car Insurance

First of all, no, there aren’t specialist insurance products out there for cars sporting a lovely shade of lime green. That we know of anyway – What we’re talking about is car insurance that is eco-friendly.

Undoubtedly one of the biggest developments in the consumer sector in recent years is sustainability products and with environmentalism becoming more and more important to customers, insurance providers have entered into the fray and are trying to do more in reducing their carbon footprints.

To mark this rise to prominence, we’ve come up with a list of five things you need to know about green car insurance.

Thing one: Carbon neutrality is the future
Carbon neutrality is becoming more and more popular among consumers around the world and the UK hasn’t been left behind by this particular trend.

People are surrounded by news of climate change and the once-loud voices of sceptics are being drowned out by the chorus of scientific research verifying its existence.

To take advantage of this move towards eco-friendliness, car insurers have started offering green products that will help reduce users’ impact on the environment.

Thing two: Offsetting through tree planting remains popular
One of the main ways insurers cut drivers’ emissions is through carbon offsetting. This is essentially the practice of doing something beneficial for the environment to make up for the pollution involved in operating a car.

Perhaps the most popular way of doing this is to plant trees. Greenery gives off vital oxygen and fights back against carbon monoxide and dioxide, which are two of the main contributors to greenhouse gases.

As part of a green insurance scheme, providers will often pledge to match a customer’s mileage with the planting of a tree and while this is normally more expensive than an ordinary policy, it’s a great way to improve your green credentials.

Thing three: It follows similar schemes in the airline industry
Offsetting isn’t actually a new idea. There have been similar schemes running in the airline industry for years now and companies like Virgin Atlantic, American Airlines and Qantas all offer customers the chance to cover the emissions from their flight via tree planting regimes.

Indeed, it isn’t even just big-name luxury, global airlines getting in on the action. EasyJet, which might be more well known for jetting vacationers out to budget holiday locales on the Iberian peninsula, also operates one of these schemes.

Airlines are huge polluters and planes burn fuel at such a vast rate that they have been identified by green charities as one of the main contributors to global warming of all.

But environmental activists across the globe have welcomed efforts by big airlines to improve this through carbon offsetting and it looks like the car insurance industry’s attempts to follow could yield similar praise.

Thing four: Global warming is getting worse and it’s up to all of us to do our bit
Global warming absolutely is getting worse and despite the claims of some scientists, the overwhelming body of evidence points towards rising sea levels and heightened temperatures being a part of our future.

But there are things we can do. While green car insurance represents a fantastic opportunity for consumers to up their eco-friendly credentials and lessen their impact on Mother Earth, the effort shouldn’t stop there.

Take recycling for example. Members of the public can send off their plastic, glass and cardboard goods to be turned into new products and this is great for the environment. Not only does it help capacity issues at landfills across the country, but it will also allow local businesses to use the reclaimed materials to make new products – preventing harmful emissions in the process.

Another great way to improve your carbon footprint is to install insulation in your home. Not only does it reduce your energy bills (which will soon pay off any initial fees paid for its fitting), but it will also stop harmful greenhouse gasses from being transmitted into the atmosphere.

Thing five: If you sign up, check the small print
However, despite all the benefits of green car insurance, you should still check the small print to ensure you are properly covered.

The fact is, green or not green, there will always be companies looking to make a quick buck off consumers who don’t check the exact terms of their contract and this could leave them in legal limbo.

If you think you have been misled at any point when you were buying a green car insurance product, it’s probably best to talk to a motoring / driving lawyer, as they will be able to help resolve the situation and prevent you from dishing out thousands of pounds if an accident takes place.

It’s also vital you check your policy is updated regularly as driving without insurance can incur a number of stiff penalties, including fines, a driving ban or even a jail sentence. However, the latter is relatively rare and will normally only affect repeat offenders, although this still won’t lessen the pain of losing your licence.

Featured images:

Francesca Whitney is part of the marketing team at Slater & Gordon Lawyers.