Synthesis of Information Related to Transit Problems. Topic SH-09. Current Practices of Greenhouse Gas Emissions Savings from Transit

The Transportation Research Board's special report 251, Toward a Sustainable Future, identified transit investments as one of a handful of strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector. By moving more people with fewer vehicles, public transportation can reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Transit can also reduce greenhouse gas emissions by facilitating compact development, which conserves land and decreases the distances people need to travel to reach destinations. Finally, transit can minimize its own greenhouse gas emissions by using efficient vehicles, alternative fuels, and decreasing the impact of its construction and operations. Over 800 mayors across the United States have signed a U.S. Conference of Mayors agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and numerous states have passed legislation to reduce emissions. A synthesis would be helpful to state and local governments considering how to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the transportation sector. It would also help transit agencies choose between available vehicle and fuel types based on their greenhouse gas emissions. The synthesis report would contribute to the Federal Transit Administration's (FTA's) strategic research Goal 5: "Protect the Environment and Promote Energy Independence." This report would synthesize available information and produce a compendium of the knowledge available on transit's ability to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. This would also include discussion of the potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by increasing ridership on existing transit, shifting single occupancy vehicle travel to targeted new transit investments, using transit to facilitate compact development, and minimizing transit's emissions from its own operations and construction. As information is available, the report will try to document greenhouse gas emissions per passenger mile from different forms of transit compared to private vehicles. Finally, the synthesis will identify specific areas in which further research is needed.


  • English


  • Status: Active
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project J-07, Topic

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Federal Transit Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  USA  20590

    Transit Cooperative Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC    20001
  • Project Managers:

    Vlasak, Donna

  • Performing Organizations:

    Transportation Research Board

    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC  USA  20001
  • Start Date: 20080626
  • Source Data: RiP Project 18153

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01462568
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project J-07, Topic
  • Files: TRB, RiP, USDOT
  • Created Date: Jan 3 2013 2:06PM