Some people say that when you travel, it’s not the destination that’s important, but the journey. That’s also a good way to think about the impact travel has on the environment. Getting from one place to another is one of the biggest—and fastest growing—sources of greenhouse-gas emissions. According to the U.S. EPA, transportation accounted for 29% of America’s greenhouse-gas emissions in 2006, and that’s just from cars, planes, and boats moving from place to place—it doesn’t include the energy or emissions involved in building vehicles or producing their fuel.
Because transportation is such a big problem for the planet, this chapter helps you become a more responsible traveler. You’ll get tips to help you leave your car in the garage or trade it in for a more earth-friendly model. This chapter also explores how to reduce the impact of long-distance travel, whether you’re on family vacation or a business junket. Knowing you’re traveling in an environmentally responsible way will let you sit back, relax, and enjoy the journey.
It used to be the American dream: two cars in every garage and a chicken in every pot. Many people are adapting that dream to the 21st century by making sure the chicken is free-range and having just one car—or none at all. If you want to spend less time in the car or even trade it in for a bike or pair of walking shoes, this section is for you.
Buses, trains, ...