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Transport and Environment

In Search of Sustainable Solutions

Edited by Eran Feitelson and Erik Verhoef

The impact of transport on the environment is a major issue of worldwide concern. This important new book presents state-of-the-art contributions on spatial and technological aspects of transport in relation to environmental degradation, together with analysis of sustainable transport policy.
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Chapter 12: International transport and the environment: an assessment of trends and driving forces

Daniëlle B. van Veen-Groot and Peter Nijkamp


Daniëlle B. van Veen-Groot and Peter Nijkamp INTRODUCTION The world-wide liberalization trends have created the conditions for the internationalization of our economies. These internationalization trends may have large impacts on the transport system and the global environment. In particular, the rise in greenhouse effects is a major environmental problem. There is a growing concern that emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases resulting from human activities might cause an increase in the earth’s surface temperature, and change the climate of the earth by means of an enhanced greenhouse effect (IPCC, 1995). For example, carbon dioxide has been responsible for 55 per cent of the enhanced greenhouse effect in the past, and is likely to remain so in the future. Other important greenhouse gases are water vapour and ozone (IPCC, 1992). Transport is a significant contributor to the greenhouse effect. World-wide, transport causes 20 per cent of the problem, while agriculture and deforestation cause 25 per cent and power generation 25 per cent. Although other sectors also contribute considerably to the emission of greenhouse gases, the contribution of the transportation sector is expected to increase drastically. Several trends indicate a steady growth of goods as well as of passenger transport. On the other hand, the development of new transportation technologies may reduce the negative environmental consequences of transport (for a detailed overview, see Nijkamp et al., 1998). The relation between globalization, international transport and the global environment involves a large number of processes and interactions. Many factors influence future...

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