Transportation accounts for more than 41% of emissions in California! That’s more than electricity, agriculture, residential, and commercial air pollution combined! Many Californians get from point A to point B using a vehicle without even thinking about it. Take the Clean Air Pledge on October 3 to find new ways you can improve local air quality.

Grades of Green students are also passionate about air quality. Antonio from Long Beach worked with Assemblymember David Hadley to introduce ACR 160, a resolution to encourage schools in California to implement No Idle Zones around campus. No Idle Zones encourage parents to turn off their car engine while waiting in school pick-up lines which helps improve air quality for students. Several other students have helped improved air quality by implementing No Idle Zones in their schools and communities, encouraging “walking school busses”, and spreading the word about other simple ways students can improve air quality.

Join the movement to improve local air quality today by taking the Clean Air Pledge here!

San Pedro High School celebrated Air Quality Awareness Month in May by taking on our No Idle Zone activity. This green initiative matters a lot: idling is linked to higher rates of asthma (among other serious health issues), which is the most common chronic illness among children as well as the largest cause of school absences.

The school is located in California where school bus drivers are required by law to turn off their engine if they are waiting for longer than one minute. We’re talking about saving the school district money — on average, drivers waste 1-2 tanks of gas every year by idling — and making it easier for young lungs to breathe. To thank their campus bus drivers’ commitment to student health, San Pedro High School acknowledged these drivers with a certificate and a thank you gift (see photos here and here).

Eager to bring a No Idle Zone to your campus? Start by registering to unlock the full activity on our website. Learn more about the activity, the impacts of idling, and best practices for taking on No Idle Zones by watching our webinar.

What’s greener than no idle zones in schools? No idle zones in car dealerships! In celebration of Earth Month, LAcarGUY is setting a new auto industry standard by introducing the very first No Idle Service Center in all 11 of their South Bay dealerships. As one of Grades of Green’s longtime supporters, LAcarGUY has helped dozens of schools take on the No Idle Zone activity to educate parents and students on why it’s important to reduce carbon emissions and unnecessary idling. As green leaders of the auto industry, LAcarGUY is showing just why they are on the forefront of environmental sustainability. Way to go LAcarGUY! Interested in implementing a no idle zone in your school? Check out Grades of Green’s No Idle Zone Activity for a step-by-step guide on how to roll out a successful program and don’t forget to watch our recent webinar to learn how one small and simple change can make a positive impact on the environment.

Grades of Green was featured in the Santa Monica Daily Press in recognition of all the Grades of Green Website Activities and Youth Corps Eco-Leadership Activities implemented throughout schools in Santa Monica! Check out the article here to see what schools in Santa Monica are doing to help the environment. Click here to register and unlock our 40+ Grades of Green Activities and click here to learn more about our Youth Corps Eco-Leadership Program.

Thank you to everyone who joined us for our No Idle Zone webinar recently! We’ve uploaded and embedded the full webinar video as well as the idling pollution clip to this post.
​For the best viewing experience, click play and then expand to the full screen version!

Here’s a list of commonly asked questions about taking on the No Idle Zone:

– How do I join Grades of Green?
First, register here. ​This will give you full access to implementation instructions and resources for 40+ activities. You’ll then be matched up with a Grades of Green advisor who will provide free support as you roll out activities at your school.

– Where are the No Idle Zone implementation steps?
Click here to see the instructions.
​*Helpful tip: make sure you are registered for and logged in before you can access the full instructions and resources!

– How do I form a Grades of Green Team?
Click here to see the instructions.
*Helpful tip: make sure you are registered for and logged in before you can access the full instructions and resources!

– Where can I download a No Idle Zone banner to print out and hang up?
You can download and hang up this banner.
*Helpful tip: Feel free to make & decorate your own banners from scratch!

– Where can I find some facts on the negative effects of idling?
Check out Antonio’s No Idling Facts (PDF).​

– Are there more resources I can download?
Access the rest of our No Idle Zone activity’s Downloadable Resources here.
*Helpful tip: make sure you are registered for and logged in before you can access the full instructions and resources!

– What’s a tip I can read over the morning announcements, turn into an environmental display, use on flyers/handouts, etc.?
Feel free to use this No Idle Zone Earth Tip​.​

– How do I spread the word about my school’s No Idle Zone or educate the broader school community about idling?
Here’s the No Idle Zone Communications Toolkit.​

– How do I share our photos and videos with Grades of Green?
First of all, thank you for doing amazing work! You can email your media directly to or your school’s personal Grades of Green advisor. We’re social — ​you can now tag us on social media! Follow us ​on:

Facebook –

Twitter –

Instagram –

Pinterest –

YouTube –

– We’re taking on the No Idle Zone activity! How do we get a badge for it on our school’s profile page?
Earn your badge for the No Idle Zone activity by clicking on the green “Taking On This Activity?” button at the upper righthand side of this page.​

– What happens when my school takes on 5+ activities?
Check out some of our Grades of Green Certified schools​.

– Any inspirational stories about implementing the No Idle Zone activity?
Here’s our blog post about Antonio & ACR 160.

– What other activities can I take on?
Check out the rest of our 40+ activities.

– I’m not a part of a school. How can I be involved?
Find your local GOG school here and let us know when you send us a email. We’ll introduce you to the Grades of Green representative(s) at that school. Be sure to let them know how you can help out (or ask what they need help with) and when you’re available to pitch in.

– What pollutants can we measure & how?
There are a variety of air quality monitors that measure specific pollutants. This is air quality monitor was recently recommended to us by the folks at Coalition for Clean Air: They tell us that these devices are pretty reliable and are tested as very accurate by AQMD. They retail for $180 though schools might be able to ask for a discount.

– How can we keep students safe?
If students are involved, have a sign-up sheet to keep track of how many students will be helping out. Go over protocols such as what you’ll be doing and provide safety tips. One helpful tip is designating a space for everyone holding signs to stand in that’s slightly further away from the drop-off/pick-up zone. You can make this space by using safety cones or draw out the area in chalk.

– Need further clarification or have additional questions?
Feel free to send an email to or email your school’s personal Grades of Green advisor.

Grades of Green is excited to host its first ever webinar on Facebook Live about improving air quality through establishing a No Idle Zone! Schools across the country are invited to join us on February 22nd as we explain the dangers of toxic car emissions and how students, parents, teachers and volunteers can take action to spread awareness about air pollution and improve their school environment. The Webinar is a great way to help schools implement Grades of Green’s No Idle Zone Activity, with step-by-step instructions to encourage drivers to turn off car engines as they wait at school drop-off and pick-up areas. According to Hamilton County Environmental Services and Air Watch Northwest, 3 pounds of pollution per month is put into the air for just one vehicle drop-off and pick-up at a school. Reducing idling on school campuses greatly reduces emissions, which also shrinks the school’s carbon footprint and helps clear the air our children breathe. Through the interactive webinar, participants will be able to post comments in real time on Facebook and ask Grades of Green experts questions as we go, creating a dialogue that will give everyone the tools that they need to jumpstart the Activity. We are excited to offer the first 20 schools that join the webinar and take on the No Idle Zone Activity a FREE banner that students can display in front of their schools to remind drivers to turn off their engines


Grades of Green Youth Corps students and brother tag-team Ismail B. and Umar B. kicked off No Idle Zones at Woodbury Elementary school to educate drivers about the importance of turning off car engines in school pick-up lines. Inspired by the passing of ACR 160, Umar and Ismail were excited to introduce Grades of Green’s No Idle Zone Activity to their school community as there are three parking lots on campus that are filled with cars at the end of each school day. The duo started by explaining their idea to the principal, and after receiving his support, they provided each teacher with information on the impact of idling on our planet. From there, Umar and Ismail created educational posters and flyers, and hosted a two day campaign at school to educate their community about the impact of idling in the school parking lots. The Activity has been a huge success; congratulations Umar and Ismail! Interested in implementing No Idle Zones at your school? Grades of Green is excited to host our first webinar, which will focus on the No Idle Zones Grades of Green Activity. All educators, students and volunteers are welcome to tune in! The webinar will take place on Wednesday, February 22nd, 2017 at 3:15pm. To join the webinar, check out our Facebook page as we will be broadcasting from Facebook Live! The first 20 schools that join the webinar and take on our No Idle Zone Activity here will receive a FREE No Idle Zone banner to display proudly at your school.

Grades of Green is excited to share our No Idle Zone Communications Toolkit with you to help spread the word to your school and broader community about why idling at schools is dangerous for our kids and what your school can do about it! Grades of Green student Antonio inspired the passage of ACR 160 in California, which encourages all schools across the state to create a No Idle Zone, simply meaning parents are encouraged to turn off their cars when dropping off and picking up their kids from school. Not in California? No problem! Grades of Green offers an easy-to-follow No Idle Zone Activity to implement at any school across the globe! 29 other states also have No Idle Zone legislation, and with your help, we can make it all 50 states!



In addition to implementing the No Idle Zone Activity, you can use the following tools to spread the news and raise awareness for the cause:

Post on your school’s website or include in the school’s e-newsletter! [Click here for a sample post]

Tweet about No Idle Zones [Click here for sample Tweets]

Make a Facebook post about No Idling [Click here for sample posts]

Inform the school community with a video [Click here for a sample video]

Write an article for your local newspaper [Click here for a sample article]

Get creative! Craft one of our Display Cases or add Grades of Green’s No Idle Zone facts to your morning announcements.


ACR 160 encourages participation in Grades of Green’s No Idle Zone Activity. When you register for Grades of Green here, you can unlock the step-by-step implementation instructions and resources for this Activity, such as research showing why no idling at schools is important for the environment and our kids’ health.

Looking for some tips from other Grades of Green schools who have implemented No Idle Zones? Check out how Robinson Elementary implemented No Idle Zones last year and how to kick it up a notch with their “good tickets” at the parent drive area!

If you have any suggestions for items you’d like to see in this toolkit, let us know at

“Turn it off so we don’t caugh!” chanted kindergarten cheerleaders at Robinson Elementary School in Manhattan Beach during their No Idle Zone assembly on June 7th. Inspired by the No Idle Zone Activity on the Grades of Green website, students at Robinson held a No Idle Zone rally in February that caught the attention of Assemblymember David Hadley. Since February, the entire community has rallied behind Robinson’s student-led No Idle Zone, which encourages parents to turn off the car engine while waiting to pick-up kids from school. Encouraging parents to turn off their car while waiting decreases the amount of carbon emitted from vehicles and increases the air quality our students breath.

Last year, David Hadley met Youth Corps Student Antonio who implemented the No Idle Zone Activity at his school in Long Beach. Assemblymember Hadley was so inspired by Antonio’s passion to decrease carbon emissions and increase the health of school-aged students, he authored a resolution (ACR 160) that will require schools across the state of California to encourage parents not to idle their engines while they drop off and pick up their students from school. The students were so excited about Assemblymember Hadley visiting their school that they made signs from recycled cardboard boxes supporting ACR 160 and made cheers about it! Check out the video below to see what Assemblymember Hadley spoke to the students about! Antonio and students from Robinson will be in Sacramento on June 23rd to see the resolution pass on the Assembly Floor. Want to impelement No Idle Zones at your school? Click here to find out how!