Mode, load, and specific climate impact from passenger trips

Borken-Kleefeld J, Fuglestvedt J, & Berntsen TK (2013). Mode, load, and specific climate impact from passenger trips. Environmental Science & Technology DOI:10.1021/es4003718.

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Abstract

The climate impact from a long-distance trip can easily vary by a factor of 10 per passenger depending on mode choice, vehicle efficiency, and occupancy. In this paper we compare the "specific climate impact" of long-distance car travel with coach, train, or air trips. We account for both, CO2 emissions and short-lived climate forcers. This particularly affects the ranking of aircraft's climate impact relative to other modes. We calculate the specific impact for the Global Warming Potential and the Global Temperature Change Potential, considering time horizons between 20 and 100 years, and compare with results accounting only for CO2 emissions. The car's fuel efficiency and occupancy are central whether the impact from a trip is as high as from air travel or as low as from train travel. These results can be used for carbon-offsetting schemes, mode choice and transportation planning for climate mitigation.

Item Type: Article
Research Programs: Mitigation of Air Pollution (MAG)
Air Quality & Greenhouse Gases (AIR)
Bibliographic Reference: Environmental Science & Technology; 47(14):7608-7614 (July 2013) (Published online 13 June 2013)
Depositing User: IIASA Import
Date Deposited: 15 Jan 2016 08:48
Last Modified: 04 Apr 2016 10:18
URI: http://pure.iiasa.ac.at/10428

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