Home > Travel > Alternative Eco Friendly Transport

Alternative Eco Friendly Transport

By: Scott McBride - Updated: 27 Dec 2012 | comments*Discuss
 
Transport Walking Greenhouse Gases

The greenest and cheapest mode of transport is as old as mankind itself, but it has been in long-term decline. It is, of course, walking and it’s still a viable mode of transport for many trips.

Nearly a quarter of all trips made are one mile or less. That’s a comfortable distance to walk and the benefits are obvious. No greenhouse gases are released, it’s free and there are important health benefits at a time when about 60 per cent of men and 70 per cent of women are not physically active enough to benefit their health. Walking has declined over the years, partly because more people have gained access to cars and partly because walking has become a less attractive alternative on busy, traffic-polluted streets.

Cycling is every bit as green as walking and has the same health benefits. The cost of buying and running a bicycle is tiny when compared to a car and, as 42 per cent of all trips made are within two miles – cycling is a real alternative.

On Your Bike

Walking and cycling can provide links to public transport systems and introduce moderate exercise into people’s daily routines. To help avoid traffic, the National Cycle Network has over 10,000 miles of walking and cycle routes on traffic-free paths, quiet lanes and traffic-calmed roads. The well-signed network connects towns and villages, countryside and coast throughout Britain, and 75 per cent of the UK population live within two miles of a route.

In big cities like London, a bicycle can be quicker than a car. A bike can travel four miles in around 22 minutes, while it can take a car up to 40 minutes for the same journey on congested city roads. The finances are stacked in the bicycle’s favour too, as no road tax, MOT or fuel is needed, servicing is cheaper and bikes depreciate in value far less than cars.

For some journeys it will not be practical to either walk or cycle and in those instances it may be worth considering public transport. Each person in the UK travels an average of 6,500 miles per year, but the vast majority of that distance is in a car, either as a driver or passenger. Only seven per cent of the distance is by bus and six per cent by rail.

Greener by Bus

Leaving the car at home and using public transport is far kinder to the environment. Taking the train instead of the car reduces harmful emissions by a factor of five and using the bus for a similar journey reduces emissions by a factor of 10. Also, traffic congestion could be reduced considerably if more people used public transport, as a bus has the carrying capacity of 10 cars, and a train around 100.

For holidays in Europe, it is worth looking at trains and ferries as viable options to flights. When compared to travelling by aircraft, a train will reduce carbon dioxide emissions by a third for trips to, say, the south of France. If going by ferry and car it depends on how many people are travelling. Two people travelling together this way will reduce carbon dioxide emissions by a third, but four people travelling together will cut emissions by about 58 per cent.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopefully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Topics
Latest Comments
  • Rob
    Re: Grants Available For Your Business
    Any grants for installing double glazing in commercial building in highlands.
    1 December 2020
  • Gregor
    Re: Grants Available For Your Business
    Hello All, Can anyone point me in the right direction for eco friendly business grants, we are based in Hertfordshire.
    30 November 2020
  • Reg
    Re: New Build Grants and Funds
    Planning to convert a run down small stone barn into a cozy one-room stone cottage. It's in Devon. Planning to insulate, use double…
    29 November 2020
  • Spence
    Re: New Build Grants and Funds
    Hi, I have found land and in motion of purchasing without planning (high risk high reward I know) I would like some information to…
    29 November 2020
  • Pat
    Re: New Build Grants and Funds
    I am just about to purchase a building plot and I’m going to build an oak timber frame bungalow,are there any grants available which…
    29 November 2020
  • Bob
    Re: Grants Available For Your Business
    Is there a grant for changing from electric heaters to central heating at my holiday let's in Blackpool?
    24 November 2020
  • Mina
    Re: Eco-School Grants and Funds
    Hi I am enquiring on behalf of Claines Church of England Primary School which is based in Worcester. How would they go about…
    4 November 2020
  • Rach
    Re: Eco-School Grants and Funds
    Starting a gardening club from scratch in a school and would like to know how to work towards getting the bronze award.
    21 October 2020
  • Julie
    Re: Eco-School Grants and Funds
    Hi - we have our bronze award. Working hard for silver. Any tips/grants for progress in this would be gratefully received. We would…
    15 October 2020
  • Nicola
    Re: Grants Available For Your Business
    Good morning I am looking for some advice please. I work for a village community centre, a community interest charity.…
    15 October 2020