Transportation and the environment

David Banister*, Karen Anderton, David Bonilla, Moshe Givoni, Tim Schwanen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


The growth of CO2-intensive transport, mobility and the impact of transport on the environment are reviewed. The recent global exponential growth in transport is unsustainable and must end unless the transport sector can decarbonize. The paper examines solutions for low-carbon transport systems; the behavioral options; possible demand reduction; the role of innovative technologies; and the means by which international agreements on pricing, standards, and regulations can be effectively used. Transport brings enormous benefits to society, and it has been instrumental in the globalization of the world economy, with substantial capital investments in its material infrastructure. Transport governance also needs rethinking to understand the major challenges, to implement major policy changes, and to address the problems of fragmented decision making. Holistic approaches, using ideas from transition management and niche development, are proposed as a framework within which both technological innovation and new patterns of travel and trade can be brought about.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)247-270
Number of pages24
JournalAnnual Review of Environment and Resources
StatePublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • behavioral change
  • decarbonization
  • governance
  • technological optimism
  • unsustainable growth


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