10 Jul 2009:
New Bus Systems Reduce
Traffic, Pollution in Developing Cities
Large, low-emission buses being introduced in developing cities from Mexico City to Ahmedabad, India are reducing congestion on crowded roadways and cutting pollution and carbon dioxide emissions
, all at a much lower cost than constructing subways. In Bogota, Colombia, city leaders took control of two to four center lanes of major boulevards for the TransMilenio rapid transit system. Small walls isolate the “tracks” of the bus lines from other traffic, and passengers are able to board the long, segmented buses from the center platforms of modern stations. Since 2001, the TransMilenio bus system has allowed the city to remove 7,000 small private buses from roadways and has slashed fuel use by more than 59 percent, according to a New York Times
report. As a result, TransMilenio last year became the only large transportation system allowed by the United Nations to generate and sell carbon credits. Climate researchers say that emissions reductions related to transportation will become increasingly urgent in coming decades, particularly in the developing world. According to a recent report by the Asian Development Bank and the Clean Air Institute, carbon emissions related to transportation are expected to increase more than 50 percent by 2030. And 80 percent of that increase will happen in developing cities. Projects similar to Bogota’s TransMilenio are planned in Cape Town, Mexico City, and Jakarta, Indonesia.
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Tribal people and ranchers join together to stop a project that would haul coal across their Montana land. Watch the video.
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An aerial view of why Europe’s per capita carbon emissions are less than 50 percent of those in the U.S. View the photos.
Ugandan scientists monitor the impact of climate change on one of Africa’s most diverse forests and its extraordinary wildlife. Learn more.
video series looks at the staggering amount of food wasted in the U.S. – a problem with major human and environmental costs. Watch the video.
video goes onto the front lines with Colorado firefighters confronting deadly blazes fueled by a hotter, drier climate. Watch the video.
A three-part series Tainted Harvest
looks at the soil pollution crisis in China, the threat it poses to the food supply, and the complexity of any cleanup. Read the series.