Google Maps will help you save fuel by taking more eco-friendly routes

The update to Google Maps shows the most fuel-efficient routes while environmental impact guidance will appear across all of Google services

Google Climate Change features
(Image credit: Google)

When you type in a route in Google Maps you are typically shown the fastest options for your journey. But from today you may also be presented with the most fuel-efficient option. In a move to highlight our environmental impact, more information is being made available on climate change and how to minimize our impact on it.

Google Maps will take into account the speed of traffic and type of road to deliver the most carbon-efficient route to your destination. The sweet spot is traveling between 35 and 65mph. This will help you reduce the amount of fuel you need for the journey and therefore reduce the amount of carbon dioxide your car pumps into the atmosphere.

Routes that are more fuel-efficient are marked with a leaf on the map, while details below show the fuel savings by taking the selected route. Bike and scooter-sharing information will also be expanded to over 300 cities. These features are rolling out in the US from today and will be available in the UK and Europe from next year. Cycling directions are also due to be coming soon.

Google Climate Change features

(Image credit: Google)

It’s not just Maps, either. Google is rolling out environmental advice across its channels to help users reduce their impact on climate change. For travel, flights will show the CO2 emissions of the journey and even the differences between that economy and business seat (the larger the seat, the more impact). While hotel searches on Google will display any environmental certifications or sustainability commitments made by that building or brand.  

Energy usage details will also appear in Google’s shopping feature, highlighting products that are more efficient for buyers. There will even be added features for those looking for electric cars, including showing the compatible chargers and charging times for a selected model.

New Google pages have also been created on climate change, proving users with more information and how to take action. Google says it is making the sustainable choice easier to find and that lots of these small actions by individuals will have a big effect on the planet.

Mat Gallagher
Mat Gallagher

As T3's Managing Editor in the US, Mat is a true lover of gadgets, but especially anything that involves cameras, cars, music or travel. Originally from the UK, he has written about technology since 2003 and is now based in Chicago.