Planes, Trains and Automobiles: The Most Efficient Way To Travel

Transport represents almost a quarter of Europe’s greenhouse gas emissions and is the main cause of air pollution in cities. Carbon dioxide remains in the atmosphere longer than other gases, so cars have a more harmful impact on climate change in the long term — but, engines produce more than just carbon dioxide as a waste product. They also produce nitrous oxide and methane which are both greenhouse gases and are harmful for the environment.

Have you ever wondered how your personal carbon footprint changes depending on the kind of journey you make? Different modes of travel have different impacts on greenhouse gas emissions.

The results show that if you drive to work, you are releasing more grams of CO2 per km than an economy passenger on a long-haul flight. A medium petrol car emits 212.1g of CO2 per km, per person, while a long-haul flight passenger emits 80.6 CO2 per km. Unsurprisingly, bicycle and electric car ranked as the greenest commuting methods.

Here are the five cleanest ways to travel:

  1. Bicycle: 0lb CO2 per km/0.6 miles
  2. Electric car (with solar panels): 0lb CO2 per km/0.6 miles
  3. Electric car: 0.03lb CO2 per km/0.6 miles
  4. International Rail (Eurostar): 0.033lb CO2 per km/0.6 miles
  5. Ferry (foot passenger): 0.04lb CO2 per km/0.6 miles

Find out how much carbon dioxide other modes of transport emits below.