Here’s How Fastag Benefits The Environment And Helps In Reducing Jams
Long waits at toll booths, emissions leading to air pollution, paper bills for toll fees...all these taking the fun out of driving on highways? Worry not, that’s precisely what FASTag aims to address. FASTag is a system introduced by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), aimed at collecting the toll electronically.
To opt for this electronic toll payment system, simply get online and choose from amongst the various Banks offering FASTag. A FASTag can benefit the environment in many ways but before we understand the those, let’s first understand how it works and how does one recharge it.
How does a FASTag work?
FASTag employs the Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology to make payments from a prepaid account that is linked to the FASTag device. These prepaid tags can be recharged and fixed on the windscreen of your car. Because FASTags are rechargeable, they offer the benefit of longevity.
Thanks to FASTag, your journey on the highway is made easy - as you no longer have to stop at booths - to pay a toll or wait endlessly for your turn. The FASTag system was made mandatory with effect from Feb 15.
Apart from smooth highway management, FASTag comes with environmental benefits. These include:
Highways can be crowded and lead to unending traffic jams near toll booths. The jams mean an increase in fuel emissions, apart from inconveniencing hundreds of those travelling on these highways.
Reduced Carbon Emissions
By using a FASTag, you save fuel, which also means lower carbon emissions. The use of an electronic toll payment system is in line with India’s plans to move ahead with the goal of lowering its carbon footprint by nearly 35 per cent by 2030. Transport makes up for nearly 20 per cent of the global carbon emissions. When it comes to travel by road, it accounts for almost 75 per cent of carbon emissions. Using a FASTag will definitely contribute towards this goal.
As part of a study* conducted by the Department of Mechanical Engineering, IIT Varanasi, Particulate Matter (PM), pollution was assessed, among other factors at three toll booths in India (NH-19). The results in the study have shown that PM10 and PM2.5 levels were ‘severe’ in all poll booths and the average readings showed that they were in the ‘unhealthy’ to ‘very unhealthy’ category. PM2.5 refers to tiny particles that are two and a half microns or lower in width. Similarly, PM10 refers to particles that are 10 mm or lower.
According to the real time data** at NHAI toll booths, the average waiting time across 488 booths was 12 minutes and the congestion lasted nearly 30-35 minutes. This congestion would result in an average of 12.8 lakh litres per day of fuel burned and carbon emissions of more than 3,000 tonnes on a daily basis. The FASTag system aims to lower these numbers.
Reduced Paper Usage
Apart from reducing carbon emissions and saving fuel, a FASTag also helps lower paper usage, which is another important environmental benefit. According to statistics, paper accounts for more than one-fourth of the total waste at landfills in the world. Excessive paper usage can lead to deforestation, and drain out natural resources like water and energy. Any reduction in paper bills can help curb excessive use of paper. FASTag is a step in that direction.
FASTag also lowers noise pollution. Unending traffic jams near poll plazas means more honking and noise. With the use of FASTag, traffic can flow through seamlessly, thereby reducing noise pollution.
How does one get a FASTag
Now that you know all about the environmental benefits of a FASTag, it’s time you looked up on how to get one. The FASTag facility is made available by all leading banks in India. You can look up the list of FASTag banks to understand your bank’s FASTag login procedure.
All you need to do is head to your bank’s FASTag login page or online form and fill in your details. You will also have to upload your proof of identity to apply for a FASTag online. You can use your Internet Banking or Mobile app to apply. Once done, your RFID tag will be home delivered to you.
You can recharge your FASTag by paying online through your Credit Card/Debit Card/NEFT, Internet Banking or any other online payment mode.
The charges for FASTag vary depending upon the vehicle you own, i.e., a van, car or jeep. You can get a FASTag for as low as Rs 499.
So, what are you waiting for? Look up FASTag’s banks list to spot your bank. Alternatively, head to ICICI Bank’s FASTag form and click on ‘Buy Now’. Input your personal information and documents and get started. Harness the benefits of an electronic toll payment and make your highway drives seamless, paperless and pollution-free.
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