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Earth Power The Almighty Buck Transportation

Analysis Says Planes Might Be Greener Than Trains 345 345

New Scientist has an interesting piece up about the calculable energy costs per mile for various forms of transportation. Despite the headline ("Train can be worse for climate than plane"), the study it describes deals with highway-based vehicles, too: the authors attempted to integrate not just the cost at the tailpipe (or equivalent) for each mode of transport, but also the costs of developing and supporting the associated infrastructure, such as rails, highways and airports. Such comparisons are tricky, though; a few years back, a widely circulated report claimed that the Toyota Prius had a higher per-mile lifetime cost than the Hummer (see that earlier Slashdot post for good reason to be skeptical of the methodology and conclusions). I wonder how the present comparison would be affected by a calculation of (for instance) how much it would cost to move by plane the freight currently carried by trains.
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Analysis Says Planes Might Be Greener Than Trains

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 07, 2009 @11:10PM (#28246645)

    As we saw recently in Brazil, airplanes make great fish-food dispensers. French cuisine, mai oui!

  • by a whoabot (706122) on Monday June 08, 2009 @03:01AM (#28247789)

    That, my good sir, is precisely the problem with the omnibus. Every time I've ridden the omnibus there is someone so offensive on board I'm about to...can't even finish this sentence I'm so angry at them still. They have their headphones in, but I can hear their "hip hop" music. If I can hear it, how loud are they listening to it? Last time I was on there was some girl trying to speak French to her boyfriend or some over creature over her cellular telephone. She kept on saying "je t'aime" with the worst accent I've ever heard; it sounded like "shuttem".

    I get messy with the bicycle instead generally. Only take the bus when I'm with someone else and that's their mode of transport. Weirdos.

    If you could clean the trash out then the bus would be down-right pleasant. But ay, there's the rub: If you could clean the trash out the whole world would be down-right pleasant, you'd be lord and saviour, and it's never going to happen. Yes, that last bit is anacoluthon as well.

  • by mumma3k (1571887) on Monday June 08, 2009 @03:04AM (#28247807)
    In less developed countries like USA the major part of all trains run on diesel and oil. Here in Sweden almost all trains run on electricity.
  • And if you quit calling it an "omnibus" everyone on the bus would quit calling you a "prick" which would, I'm sure, make your time on the bus more pleasant.

    I haven't a clue what to do about the French people, though.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 08, 2009 @04:39AM (#28248381)

    The naysayers are wrong. The US isn't terribly special.

    The US is special as in special education.

Experiments must be reproducible; they should all fail in the same way.