Train Journeys (Environmental Impact)

Photo of John Hemming

John Hemming (Birmingham, Yardley, Liberal Democrat)

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment he has made of the environmental impact of a journey between London and Birmingham by (a) an electric train, (b) a diesel train and (c) a car.

Photo of Derek Twigg

Derek Twigg (Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Department for Transport; Halton, Labour)

The following table compares total emissions of CO 2 ,the main greenhouse gas, and NOxand PM 1 0 the two pollutants of most concern to local air quality, for representative electric and diesel trains and a car travelling between London and Birmingham. Two sets of figures are provided, one detailing the total emissions for the journey, the other detailing emissions per passenger journey assuming average vehicle loadings.

CO 2 (kg) NOx (g) PM 1 0 (g)
Total journey emissions
Electric train 2,020 4,320 129
Diesel train 1,270 10,800 202
Car 34.2 61.5 2.6
Emissions per passenger
Electric train 5.9 12.5 0.4
Diesel train 9.7 82.9 1.5
Car 21.7 38.9 1.6


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