How to Get There Greener


Trying to figure out the greenest option when traveling isn’t always the easiest thing to do. But a new report released by the Union of Concerned Scientists (USC) released last week will help. Called “Getting There Greener: The Guide to Your Lower-Carbon Vacation”, this 62-page document breaks down the carbon footprints on various domestic travel options such as buses, trains, planes, cars, and SUVs.

In an easy-to-read format, with plenty of graphs and tables, this report analyzes the three major factors – type of vehicle, distance to be traveled, and number of people traveling together – that influence a person’s environmental impact while traveling. As a result, they were able to create a Vacation Traveler Carbon Guide that tells you the best means of travel for the solo traveler, a couple, and a family of four.

The report also provides Top Five Rules of Thumb for Green Travel:

  • Motor coaches and trains are a carbon bargain.
  • Big SUVs and first-class flights usually have the largest carbon footprints
  • For couples and solo travelers, a non-stop coach flight almost always beats an average car.
  • To significantly reduce your carbon footprint behind the wheel, drive or rent a more efficient car.
  • Avoid traveling during peak periods.

Getting There Greener: The Guide to Your Lower-Carbon Vacation can be read online.

Image: the friendly fiend