LONDON, Sept. 22 (Xinhua) -- London has the lowest level of car ownership in Britain, the Office for National Statistics(ONS) said in a report Thursday to mark World Car Free Day.

Around the country 27 percent of households remain car free, the official statistics agency reported.

September 22 is designated as a special day to encourage people to be less dependent on their cars and make more use of walking, cycling or public transport.

The idea is to highlight that emissions from cars and other vehicles contribute to climate change by releasing carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Cars also contribute to emissions of other pollutants such as carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxide, the latter contributing to smog and acid rain.

ONS went through the gears on a journey to come up with five facts about motoring in Britain in the 21st century.

Cars are the most used mode of daily transport with 57 percent of the population saying on a typical day they used their cars. In comparison 20 percent used public transport, with walking, at 14 percent in third place and cycling next.

Around 40 percent of drivers used cars for journeys of just over three kilometers, with 42 percent admitting they could easily walk that distance.

Making short journeys by car causes more pollutants as catalytic converters designed to reduce these pollutants do not work effectively on trips under eight kilometers.

In the past 20 years the number of petrol cars on the road has decreased by 5 percent, while diesel cars have increased by almost 600 percent.

The principal air pollutant emissions from car engines have decreased over the last quarter of a century Between 1990 and 2014. The two major air pollutant emissions from car engines, carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxide, fell in Britain by 91 percent and 76 percent respectively.

In Britain almost half of households, or 46 percent, owned a car and a further 27 percent of households owned two or more cars. Meanwhile 27 percent of households did not own a car, said ONS.

Across the country car ownership varies, with the highest ownership in the southwest where 51 percent of households owned one car. In the same region 36 percent of households owned two or more cars.

Britain's capital has the lowest level of car ownership, with around 40 percent of homes in London car free. In the regions, homes in the northeast had the fewest cars. People in Scotland were the third least likely to own cars. Enditem

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