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Transportation and Climate Change Clearinghouse

Methodologies for Analyzing GHGs from Transportation

Assessments of available models and analytical tools can be used to compare greenhouse gas measurement methods and analytical approaches. This section provides resources that describe analytical approaches and research assessing the limitations in current analytical tools and data.

Assessment of Greenhouse Gas Analysis Techniques for Transportation Projects (2006) (PDF 724kb)
Transportation Research Board
Research is focused on determining what methods are available for transportation agencies to accurately estimate greenhouse gas emissions from transportation activities and identifies 17 tools or methods that can be used to analyze the GHG implications of transportation projects. The purpose of this study is to help transportation practitioners understand the strengths, limitations, and applicability of available GHG analysis techniques for transportation, and identify gaps in existing methodologies.
Emissions Analysis of Freight Transport Comparing Land-Side and Water-Side Short-Sea Routes: Development and Demonstration of a Freight Routing and Emissions Analysis Tool (FREAT) (2007) (PDF 292kb)
U.S. DOT Center for Climate Change and Environmental Forecasting
This study includes a methodology and tools to effectively compare emissions from land-side and water-side freight transport alternatives. The research team will develop and demonstrate a model that analyzes total fuel-cycle greenhouse gas (GHG) and other emissions associated with transporting freight along land-side and water-side routes. The project also evaluates tradeoffs among pollutants, costs, and travel time for moving freight between two points and will identify optimal modal combinations within a network of travel paths that lead to minimizing emissions, costs, and/or travel time.
Fact Sheets on Calculating GHG Emissions from Transportation
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
This webpage contains links to several "Emissions Facts" sheets, including information on "Metrics for Expressing Greenhouse Gas Emissions: Carbon Equivalents and Carbon Dioxide Equivalents," "Average Carbon Dioxide Emissions Resulting from Gasoline and Diesel Fuel," and "Greenhouse Gas Emissions from a Typical Passenger Vehicle." The site also includes links to technical reports on methane and nitrous oxide emissions factors for on-highway vehicles.
Flexing the Link between Transport and Greenhouse Gas Emissions - A Path for the World Back (2000) (PDF 5.74mb)
International Energy Agency
This report provides an overview of energy use and CO2 emissions as they relate to transportation and discusses the challenges in achieving GHG emission reductions in the transportation sector. The study also discusses tools and methods to achieve emissions reductions, including limitations in current analytical tools and data, and provides a framework for an analytical methodology based on transportation activity, modal share, energy intensities, and fuel mix (ASIF).
Improving Transportation Data for Mobile Source Emissions (2000)
Transportation Research Board
This paper examines the benefits and challenges related to mobile source emissions modeling in a GIS framework and identifies future GIS mobile emissions modeling research needs. Also discusses the GIS-based modeling approach: Mobile Emission Assessment System for Urban and Regional Evaluation (MEASURE).
Measuring the Greenhouse Gas Intensity of the Transportation Sector
U.S. Department of Transportation, Center for Climate Change
This project will explore two measurement approaches for GHG emissions from transportation: (1) transportation emissions per unit of GDP or transportation GDP and (2) intensity per passenger-mile or ton-mile. In both cases, the project considers transportation as a sector, by mode, and by its passenger and freight components.
Strategies to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Road Transport: Analytical Methods (2003)
Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development
This report uses a number of illustrative and pragmatic cases to provide important insights into the measures and strategies taken to reduce or stabilize greenhouse gases, as well as evaluation methods, trends in CO2 emissions, and models available to predict the level of CO2 emissions.
Transportation Impact Analysis Gets a Failing Grade When it Comes to Climate Change and Smart Growth (2009) (PDF 2.8mb)
Ronald Milam, Fehr & Peers
Transportation Tools
Environmental Protection Agency
This EPA webpage provides general transportation resources, analytical tools, and data sources on several federal agency sites.

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