The Role of State DOTs in Support of Transit-Oriented Development (TOD), NCHRP Project 25-25(20) report for American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), Standing Committee on the Environment (April 2006). This report describes the role that State Departments of Transportation can play in supporting transit-oriented development (TOD). Activities that have been undertaken or planned by State DOTs to support TOD included and described in this report include the following:
Research Results Digest 105: Summary of Research Findings: Assessing and Comparing Environmental Performance of Major Transit Investments, Transportation Research Board (May 24, 2012). This digest summarizes research on the assessment and comparison of environmental performance of major transit investments conducted under TRB’s Transit Cooperative Research Program (TCRP). The summary provides criteria, metrics, and methods for assessing the environmental performance of proposed transit projects, including metrics of energy use and greenhouse gas emissions. The summary is based on the final report of the related research project, Transit Cooperative Research Program Web-Only Document 55: Assessing and Comparing Environmental Performance of Major Transit Investments.
Transit Investments for Greenhouse Gas and Energy Reduction Program: First Assessment Report, Federal Transit Administration (Aug. 27, 2012). The Federal Transit Administration has issued a review of the Transit Investments for Greenhouse Gas and Energy Reduction (TIGGER) Program, which issued grants to transit agencies in three phases from 2009 to 2011. The report describes the types of projects funded, placing them into three categories: facility efficiency, bus efficiency, and rail. The report also describes the process of data collection and evaluation. The report says that it is too soon to draw significant conclusions regarding the effectiveness of the program. The report was prepared by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.
Public Transportation's Role in Responding to Climate Change, Federal Transit Administration (January 2010) This paper details the role public transportation has in responding to the challenge of climate change. It collects and analyzes data from across the country on public transportation fuel use, vehicles deployed, rides taken, and other key metrics, drawn from the National Transit Database at the Federal Transit Administration. This data, combined with information from the U.S. Department of Energy and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, provides valuable insight into the relative impacts of automobile, truck, SUV, and public transportation travel on the production of greenhouse gas emissions. National level data shows significant greenhouse gas emission savings by use of public transportation, which offers a low emissions alternative to driving. This paper presents an analysis of the data and frames it in a broader context, and concludes with a description of FTA actions that address climate change.
Report Calls for Shift to GHG Mitigation Strategies that Produce Health Co-Benefits, World Health Organization (Dec. 6, 2011). This report finds that a shift to a combination of cycling and walking, rapid transit, and improved land use can provide greater immediate health "co-benefits" than climate change mitigation strategies that focus on improvements to fuel and vehicle efficiency. The report, Health Co-Benefits of Climate Change Mitigation - Transport Sector, considers the available scientific evidence on health impacts from climate change mitigation strategies reviewed in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's 2007 Fourth Assessment Report. The report also offers recommended strategies for achieving healthier transport, including investing in, and prioritizing, transport networks for pedestrians, cyclists, and rapid transit/public transport. In addition, the report highlights policy tools to support health-oriented strategies, such as strengthening land use and transport planning codes and enforcement.
Global Bus Rapid Transit Database Launched, World Resources Institute (March 30, 2012) – This public database of bus rapid transit (BRT) systems worldwide has been developed to assist researchers, planners, and transit agencies with decisions on improvements to local BRT and bus corridors. The online database allows users to compare BRT systems and bus corridors in 134 cities and 36 countries, and includes 95 indicators on system operations, design, and cost.
Greenhouse Gas Emission Impacts of Carsharing in North America, Mineta Transportation Institute (June 2010). This report documents a study of the greenhouse gas emissions impacts from individuals participating in carsharing. The study conducted a survey of the travel pattern changes of households participating in carsharing organizations across North America, finding that GHG emissions from transportation are lower due to carsharing. The study found that while carsharing facilitates a decrease in annual emissions from some participants and an increase among others, the overall net annual emissions among households joining car sharing programs are lower. The study also found that respondent households showed significant reductions in vehicle ownership after joining carsharing programs.
Current Practices in Greenhouse Gas Emissions Savings from Transit, Transit Cooperative Research Program (TCRP) Synthesis 84, Transportation Research Board (June 2010). This report was prepared for TCRP Project J-7, Topic SH-09, to examine the role of transit agencies in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and examine the current practice of a sample of transit agencies. The report describes the basic ways that transit reduces GHG emissions, specific strategies that transit agencies can implement to reduce GHG emissions, techniques for estimating the impacts of transit on GHG emissions, and relevant planning and policy issues for transit agencies. The report also includes three case studies of transit agencies with experience in planning and implementing GHG reduction efforts.
Transit-Oriented Development and the Potential for VMT-related Greenhouse Gas Growth Reduction, Center for Transit-Oriented Development (March 2010). This report offers a quantitative analysis of potential greenhouse gas reductions of transit-oriented development (TOD) from the transport sector. The research, which was led by the Center for Neighborhood Technology and funded through a cooperative agreement with the Federal Transit Administration, found that the average household can reduce its transportation-related GHG emissions by 43 percent by living in a central city near transit. The report also shows that a household can achieve a 78 percent GHG emission reduction by living near the most location-efficient transit zones. In addition, the report finds that vehicle miles traveled (VMT)-related GHG emissions growth can be reduced by 36 percent if a region pursues more compact and efficient growth.
The Broader Connection Between Public Transportation, Energy Conservation, and Greenhouse Gas Reduction, ICF (February 2008). This study began with the hypothesis that public transportation interacts with land use patterns, changing travel patterns in neighborhoods served by transit and that therefore people who live in places shaped by transit would tend to drive less, reducing their overall petroleum use and their carbon footprint.
Public Transportation's Contribution to U.S. Greenhouse Gas Reduction, Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) (Sept. 2007). Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) prepared this report on behalf of the American Public Transit Association (APTA). The report addresses the potential role of public transportation in reducing greenhouse gas emissions.