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Table of Contents

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Major Topic Sections

Fossil-fueled Power
Non-Fossil Generation
End-Use Efficiency
Electricity T&D
Carbon Sequestration
Non-CO2 Reductions
Other GHG Reductions

Related topics in this section

Up to Section Head
Coal Comb. Products
Plug-In Hybrid Vehicles
Utility Fleet Veh.
Mat. Handling Vehicles
Mass Transit
Other Transit Actions
Other In-House Actions
Education Pgms.


 Mass Transportation Electrification


The transportation sector is a major consumer of energy use annually in the U.S.  This energy is primarily in the form of gasoline, diesel and jet fuel.  Electricity is used by urban heavy and light rail mass transit systems and in some rail corridors.  Electrification of additional mass transit segments could contribute to a significant net reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, as well as other emissions associated with internal combustion engines.

Examples of possible support for further electrification in the transportation sector include:

  Encouraging studies by cities and states to add electric or hybrid electric buses
  Expanding the transportation infrastructure with electrified rail
  Encouraging studies and pilot projects of electric intermodal transportation where communities use neighborhood electric vehicles to commute to electric subway or light rail as well as electric shuttle buses

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 References, Sources, and Other Useful Data

Transportation Research Board, National Research Council, "Combating Global Warming through Sustainable Surface Transportation Policy" (TCRP Project H-21, prepared by the Center for Neighborhood Technology, Chicago IL, March 2003, 209 pages)

The objective of Combating Global Warming Through Sustainable Surface Transportation Policy, together with its companion website, www.TravelMatters.org, is to present educational materials on the subject of climate change, and to examine how greenhouse gas emissions from transportation may be reduced. Both the print and web-based versions of the project review the capacity of public transportation to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions, and present this material in a format accessible to lay individuals and transit professionals. Key strategies for reducing transportation emissions are identified in the report: increasing the use of public transit and reforming corresponding land use practices, adopting energy-efficient technologies and fuels in transit fleets, and disseminating this information to a broad public.

U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Railroad Administration, “Passenger Rail”

The FRA also supports the development of policy regarding the nation's existing intercity passenger rail systems and sponsors passenger rail improvements and services. FRA's activities in this area include administering Federal grants to Amtrak; supporting the Secretary of Transportation in his capacity as a member of Amtrak's board of directors; and administering Federal grants to the Alaska Railroad. The FRA is also the Federal sponsor of High-Speed Ground Transportation.

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Website prepared for the Edison Electric Institute
and the Electric Power Industry Climate Initiative

Prepared by Twenty-First Strategies, LLC.
Copyright © 2009.  All rights reserved.
Last revised: Dec. 11, 2009.