The Institute for European Environmental Policy in the UK is looking into banning cars from school zones, not to protect students from being hit by a car, but instead to get kids to walk more. Like here in the US, British children are packing on the pounds, and a more sedentary lifestyle is a contributing factor. Parents are averaging an additional 27 miles per year carting their kids to school than they did back in 1982, and Brits of all ages average 20 less miles per year walking than in the 70s.
Perhaps the biggest single reason the British are walking less is that only 19% of all UK households are without a car, compared to 41% in the 70s. Automakers pay big bucks to replace heavier materials with aluminum or carbon fiber to lose less than two stones, but researchers at the IEEP say that walking an extra hour per week will save 28lbs of fat over the course of a decade. One would think the Brits wouldn't have an issue with obesity, what with the price of gasoline on the island, folks have to work their asses off just to afford fuel.
[Source: Channel 4]