- Baked Blueberry Banana Porridge
- The Future of Tech Devices & Healthy Shopping
- Cutting Carbs at Breakfast Can Jumpstart Weight-Loss
- Zesty Blueberry Granola Bars
- Stopping Ticks in Their Tracks
- 100 Beautiful Things
- The Triple Jump of Detoxification
- Pesto Vegetable Quiche
- A Fresh Take on Canada’s Food Guide
- The Top Tips about Dental Treatment You Should Know
- Allergies, Poor Immunity is at the Root
- Oil of Oregano Never Tasted So Good
- Cinnamon Quinoa Breakfast Bowl
- The Soothing Scents of Spring
- Top 5 Spring Superfoods
Benefits of Public Transit
— James Millerton, Armstrong, PA
The benefits of making a major commitment to building up and efficiently managing a larger and more comprehensive public transit network are many.
According to the National Alliance of Public Transportation Advocates (NAPTA), an organization that represents grassroots transit coalitions, organizations and advocates, expanded public transit, coordinated with greener development and other “operational efficiencies,” can reduce our carbon footprint by some 24 percent, which is significant given that carbon dioxide (CO2) output from the transportation sector as a whole account for 28 percent of total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. After all, buses and trains burn much less fuel per rider than a car with a single rider in it. Switching to public transit for a typical 20-mile round trip commute would decrease a commuter’s annual greenhouse gas emissions by some 4,800 pounds a year, which is equal to about a 10 percent reduction in a two-car household’s carbon footprint.
Another group, the American Public Transit Association (APTA), reports that current use of public transit in the U.S. already saves 37 million metric tons of CO2 annually, equivalent to the emissions resulting from electricity generation to power some five million typical American homes.
A massive shift to public transit would also be good for our pocketbooks. According to NAPTA, U.S. car owners can save as much as $112 billion a year in gasoline and other vehicle costs. “Public transportation offers an immediate alternative for individuals seeking to reduce their energy use and carbon footprints,” reports NAPTA. “Taking public transportation far exceeds the combined benefits of using energy-efficient light bulbs, adjusting thermostats, weatherizing one's home, and replacing a refrigerator.”
As to reducing oil use, NAPTA says public transit already saves Americans the equivalent of 4.2 billion gallons of gasoline annually, or some 900,000 automobile fill-ups every day. And the Texas Transportation Institute (TTI) reports that individuals who live in areas served by public transportation save more than 300 million gallons of fuel a year. Meanwhile individuals can save upwards of $9,000 a year by taking public transportation instead of driving and by living with one less car.
An improved quality of life is yet another benefit of more public transit. In some ways public transit can be considered a life saver: It produces 95 percent less carbon monoxide and nearly 50 percent less nitrogen oxide—both key triggers for asthma and other respiratory and cardiovascular health problems—per passenger-mile than driving a private vehicle. Also, transit users tend to be healthier than car commuters because they walk more, which increases their fitness levels. Public transit use also means fewer cars on the road, thus reduced travel times—and less stress and road rage accordingly—for everyone. TTI reports that Americans living in areas served by public transportation save themselves almost 800 million hours in travel time every year.
EarthTalk® is written and edited by Roddy Scheer and Doug Moss and is a registered trademark of E – The Environmental Magazine (www.emagazine.com). Send questions to: [email protected]. Subscribe: www.emagazine.com/subscribe. Free Trial Issue: www.emagazine.com/trial
Baked Blueberry Banana Porridge
Despite the newfangled, grain-free combination of ingredients, this baked porridge...
Cedars-Sinai Support Non-Opioid Solutions to Pain Management
As the opioid epidemic continues to claim lives and shatter...
The Future of Tech Devices & Healthy Shopping
The term “mixed reality” refers to both augmented and virtual...
Cutting Carbs at Breakfast Can Jumpstart Weight-Loss
The trendiest diet of 2018 was hands down the ‘Ketogenic...
- Posted June 16, 2019
Zesty Blueberry Granola Bars
Makes 10 Bars Freeze: 2 months Prep Time: 10 minutes...
Stopping Ticks in Their Tracks
Tick season’s about to begin. The highest risk of Lyme...
100 Beautiful Things
Seeing the beauty around us isn’t something we’re usually focused...