Buses and coaches have a key role to play in relieving congestion, reducing the carbon footprint from transport and improving local air quality. This means maximising road space and precious fuel resources and helping the environment.
If drivers switched just one car journey to bus or coach in 25 or one a month, it would mean one billion fewer car journeys and a saving of 2m tonnes of CO2.
- Passenger cars produce nearly 60% of all CO2 emissions from road transport in the UK, compared to just 5% from buses (Department of Energy and Climate Change 2011).
- The average number of people in a car is 1.58 compared to 32 in a coach (Carbon Pathways Analysis, National Travel Survey). At 30g CO2 per passenger kilometre the express coach results in less than a quarter of the emissions per passenger than equivalent journey by car.
- Average number of passengers on a bus is 9.3; in a city a journey by bus can result in half the CO2 emissions per passenger compared to the car, and this differential would be much greater with modal shift (National Travel Survey 2009).
- Reducing congestion shortens journey times and a 10% reduction in travel time is forecast to increase productivity by 0.4%-1.1% (Eddington Transport Study 2006). The installation of a bus lane along the A259 in Brighton allowed the 12X bus service 26 minutes earlier, meaning a 29% journey time saving.
- Congestion dramatically increases CO2 emissions from road vehicles. Under heavily congested conditions tail pipe emissions can be increased by as much as 3 or 4 times. (Bell M.C. Environmental Factors in Intelligent Transport Systems, IEE Proceedings 2006)
- Operators are achieving savings in fuel consumption, carbon savings from alternative fuels and are investing in low carbon vehicles, which are estimated to use 30% less CO2 than diesel equivalents.