Evaluating greenhouse gas emission of transit agencies: A case study of Ontario, Canada

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - north america, technology - emissions, economics - pricing, policy - environment, planning - methods, planning - environmental impact


Carbon pricing systems, greenhouse gas modeling, report card, transit agencies


The objective of this research was to map out the greenhouse gas (GHG) footprint of Ontario transit agencies. A system-by-system GHG emissions model was developed to determine which transit agencies are low, medium, or high emitters based on the metric tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) emitted from mobile sources. A score card was created based on four preliminary indicators: (1) CO2e per passenger, per revenue vehicle kilometer; (2) CO2e per passenger, per service area density; (3) CO2e per vehicle, per revenue vehicle kilometer; and (4) CO2e per vehicle, per service area density. This score card provides a relative metric to compare the GHG emissions of different transit agencies which can be used as an audit standard for quantifying comparative CO2e reductions. The results indicated that one-third of transit agencies operate in the “A” grade range, while the remaining agencies received grades of “B” to “E”; thus, demonstrating the potential for utilizing Green Funds in different jurisdictions to advance technology and ridership solutions aimed at GHG emissions reduction to achieve climate change objectives.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Taylor&Francis, copyright remains with them.