Anti-Idling Campaign
In an effort to stop unnecessary idling, the Town of Ajax wants you to kick the idling habit and is promoting three anti-idling initiatives through the Every Minute Counts campaign: 
  • An anti-idling bylaw 
  • A community education program
  • Idle free zones. 

Anti-Idling Bylaw

On September 14, 2009 Ajax Council approved an anti-idling bylaw. The bylaw limits the idling of vehicles engines to less than two minutes. The bylaw also sets out a fine of $38.00 for those that don't adhere to the limit.

Community Education

Follow these helpful tips to eliminate idling and keep the air we breathe clean for generations to come.

  • Reduce "warm up" idling to 30 seconds. 
  • If you are going to be stopped for more than 10 seconds, turn off your engine (except at traffic lights). 
  • Do not use a remote car starter. 
  • In temperatures below freezing, use a block heater (preferably with a timer) to warm your engine before you start it. 
  • Spread the word to your family and friends.

The Town is encouraging local EcoSchools to urge parents to turn off their vehicles while waiting to pick up their children. The Town is also encouraging local businesses to implement an anti-idling policy within their workplace. Natural Resources Canada promotes the reduction of idling and may offer grants or incentives to business owners who implement anti-idling policies.

Idle Free Zones

Taking this anti-idling campaign a step further, the Town has introduced idle free zones around all municipal facilities and environmentally sensitive areas such as the Town's waterfront and Greenwood Conservation Area. The idle free zones are identified with unique signage. 

Survey Results

In order to develop the anti-idling strategies for the Town, an extensive survey was completed.  This survey was conducted during Ajax Green Living Days, the Urban Forest Workshop, at the Local GO Station and as a business specific survey. The results are as follows:


  • 94% would support reducing vehicle engine idling initiatives brought forward by the Town of Ajax. 
  • 98% believe each member of the community has a responsibility to protect the environment.


  • 61% of business own/operate between 1-25 vehicles. 
  • 17.6% have internal idling policies. 
  • 65% would support reducing vehicle engine idling initiatives brought forward by the Town of Ajax. 
  • 100% believe they have a responsibility to protect the environment.

Did you know?

  • An idling vehicle emits nearly 20 times more air pollution than one traveling at 50km/hr. 
  • Turning off and starting an engine uses less fuel than letting the engine run for 30 seconds. 
  • Engine wear is greater at prolonged idle than during normal operation. 
  • The Ontario Ministry of Transportation estimates that an idling gasoline vehicle with an average sized engine uses about 2.2 litres of fuel per hour; an idling diesel truck engine uses about three litres of fuel per hour. 
  • Reducing idling time by 10 minutes a day translates into approximately 60.8 hours a year, and a fuel consumption avoidance of more than 100 litres.

By reducing idling, the Town is maintaining its commitment to preserve the environment, improve local air quality and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

 Green Fleet Initiative

The Green Fleet Initiative is an effort to transition Town vehicles towards more environmentally friendly options. So far, there are three components to the initiative - the transition of town vehicles to hybrid vehicles, "right-sizing" the fleet, and an anti-idling campaign.  Greening our fleet is a great way to reduce our environmental impact, save the Town money and proudly showcase the Town's commitment to sustainability. 

The Town first incorporated a number of hybrid vehicles into the municipal fleet back in 2007. In 2015, Ajax became the first municipal fleet in Durham Region to add Plug in Electric hybrid vehicles into its fleet. Other projects have also included the upgrade of grounds maintenance equipment from 2 stroke to 4 stroke in order to reduce emissions.

In addition to fleet, the Town is working to help you adopt electric vehicle technology, each year the Town hosts the Electric Vehicle Expo and is currently installation electric vehicle charging stations in all the Towns major community centre parking lots.

 Smart Commute 
Smart Commute is a program that is offered by Metrolinx in collaboration with municipalities in the GTA. The overall goal of the program is to reduce gridlock and emissions, while improving air quality and making commuting more enjoyable and less expensive.  Smart Commute connects commuters with one another to establish carpools and other creative ways to ease the stresses of commuter living.  The Town of Ajax is a registered member of Smart Commute Durham.