The US non-governmental organisation, the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) has released the 2001 edition of its consumer guide ACEEE’s Green Book: The Environmental Guide to Cars & Trucks. The guide details all models of passenger car, pickup truck, small utility van, and minivan sold in the US this year, providing them with a ‘green score’ according to their exhaust pollution and global warming emissions, as well as by pollution from auto factories and refineries.

Along with summary ‘green scores’, the report details each model’s fuel economy, health impacts, annual fuel expenses, and global warming emissions. It identifies the 13 ‘greenest’ and 12 ‘meanest’ vehicles of the model year, and examines how recent automotive trends are affecting the environment.

Perhaps surprisingly, 10 of the 13 ‘greenest vehicles of 2001’ are petrol powered. All of the cleanest vehicles have small engines; Honda have four cars in the list, including its Civic GX and Insight models which take joint first place in the list; and Toyota has five cars in the ‘green’ list, including the third placed Prius, the nation’s first hybrid-electric family sedan (see related story).

The least environmentally-friendly vehicles are the six-litre General Motors Sierra C3/ K1500, Ferrari’s 550 Maranello, the Dodge Ram Pickup 2500 and General Motors’ Yukon Denali.

This year sees extensive nationwide sales of cars and light trucks meeting Low-Emission Vehicle standards (see related story) and the guide offers advice on which of these vehicles are the greenest and how to buy ‘green’ when shopping for a new automobile.

“With air pollution still plaguing many parts of the country, and greenhouse gas emissions disrupting the earth’s climate, choosing greener cars is more important than ever before,” said Steven Nadel, Executive Director of ACEEE. “ACEEE’s Green Book provides practical advice for consumers concerned about protecting the health of both their families and the planet.”

A copy of the highlights of the report and information on how to order the full report is available on the companion web site to ACEEE’s Green Book

Action inspires action. Stay ahead of the curve with sustainability and energy newsletters from edie