Kaid Benfield Archive


Dear America, we need more public transportation

Kaid Benfield

Posted December 1, 2011 at 1:32PM

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  public transportation in Phoenix (by: John Hall & Associates, creative commons license)

According to the American Public Transportation Association’s November  Transit Savings Report, individuals who switch from driving to riding public transportation can save, on average, almost $10,000 annually.   These savings are based on the cost of commuting by public transportation compared to the November 18, 2011 average national gas price ($3.38 per gallon- reported by AAA) and the national unreserved monthly parking rate. 

A separate APTA report calculates that a commuter who switches a 20-mile round trip commute from solo driving to public transportation can reduce his or her annual carbon emissions by 4,800 pounds per year, equal to a 10 percent reduction in greenhouse gases produced by a typical two-adult, two-car household.   By eliminating one of those cars car and taking public transportation instead of driving, the household can reduce carbon emissions by up to 30 percent.

But, in the real world, more Americans will take public transportation only if it becomes more plentiful and convenient.  This great little (30-second) video makes the case succinctly:


This video appears as one of many favorites on the YouTube channel of NRDC Sustainable Communities

Move your cursor over the top photo for credit information.