Transportation / Mobility

October 14, 2005


Smaller Municipalities Responsible for 68% of Vehicle CO2 Emissions: Survey

Keywords: Climate Change Government Transportation / Mobility 

As much as 68 percent of Japan's vehicle CO2 emissions are generated in municipalities with populations of less than 300,000. Normally, the smaller the city, the poorer the public transportation system, meaning that people have little choice but to travel by car, so they end up driving considerable distances.

These figures were released on March 24, 2005 by the Research Institute for Local Initiative in Environmental Policies, which is administered by the Coalition of Local Governments for Environmental Initiative of Japan. The institute calculated carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from the transportation sector in municipalities (cities, wards, towns and villages) for the year 2000 and estimated values for 2010.

Suburban cities and local municipalities in rural mountainous areas account for 72 percent of Japan's local governments by number. It is estimated that populations in such areas will decrease while the number of vehicles and CO2 emissions will increase. This estimation is based partly on the fact that there is a high percentage of licensed drivers in the under-45 age group and because the percent of licensed drivers closely correlates with the percent of car owners, the number of cars will increase as this group ages.

Only a few local governments have global warming action plans, and many smaller municipal governments don't even have an official in charge of global warming countermeasures. The institute plans to provide the basic data necessary for environmental policy-making in order to help such local governments draw up and implement practical CO2 emissions measures for their transportation sectors.

Posted: 2005/10/14 09:12:49 AM
Japanese version