'Green' Transport Not All That Green

Here’s an interesting bit of information about how environmentally-green mass-transportation is not simply ‘green’ by default. Written not by politicians, but by scientists, which probably qualifies them as card carrying extremists.

Its authors point out an array of factors that are often unknown to the public. These are hidden or displaced emissions that ramp up the simple “tailpipe” tally, which is based on how much carbon is spewed out by the fossil fuels used to make a trip.

Environmental engineers Mikhail Chester and Arpad Horvath at the University of California at Davis say that when these costs are included, a more complex and challenging picture emerges.

In some circumstances, for instance, it could be more eco-friendly to drive into a city — even in an SUV, the bete noire of green groups — rather than take a suburban train. It depends on seat occupancy and the underlying carbon cost of the mode of transport.

Which reminds me of a related subject, biofuels. Did you know that it is greener to burn our fossil fuels than to produce and burn biofuels?

links: Think twice about ‘green’ transport, say scientists | Fossil Fuels Out-Green Biofuels

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