Matching Items (3)

California High Speed Resilience to Climate Change

Description

This LCA used data from a previous LCA done by Chester and Horvath (2012) on the proposed California High Speed Rail, and furthered the LCA to look into potential changes

This LCA used data from a previous LCA done by Chester and Horvath (2012) on the proposed California High Speed Rail, and furthered the LCA to look into potential changes that can be made to the proposed CAHSR to be more resilient to climate change. This LCA focused on the energy, cost, and GHG emissions associated with raising the track, adding fly ash to the concrete mixture in place of a percentage of cement, and running the HSR on solar electricity rather than the current electricity mix. Data was collected from a variety of sources including other LCAs, research studies, feasibility studies, and project information from companies, agencies, and researchers in order to determine what the cost, energy requirements, and associated GHG emissions would be for each of these changes. This data was then used to calculate results of cost, energy, and GHG emissions for the three different changes. The results show that the greatest source of cost is the raised track (Design/Construction Phase), and the greatest source of GHG emissions is the concrete (also Design/Construction Phase).

Contributors

Created

Date Created
  • 2014-06-13

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High-speed rail with emerging automobiles and aircraft can reduce environmental impacts in California’s future

Description

Sustainable mobility policy for long-distance transportation services should consider emerging automobiles and aircraft as well as infrastructure and supply chain life-cycle effects in the assessment of new high-speed rail systems.

Sustainable mobility policy for long-distance transportation services should consider emerging automobiles and aircraft as well as infrastructure and supply chain life-cycle effects in the assessment of new high-speed rail systems. Using the California corridor, future automobiles, high-speed rail and aircraft long-distance travel are evaluated, considering emerging fuel-efficient vehicles, new train designs and the possibility that the region will meet renewable electricity goals. An attributional per passenger-kilometer-traveled life-cycle inventory is first developed including vehicle, infrastructure and energy production components. A consequential life-cycle impact assessment is then established to evaluate existing infrastructure expansion against the construction of a new high-speed rail system. The results show that when using the life-cycle assessment framework, greenhouse gas footprints increase significantly and human health and environmental damage potentials may be dominated by indirect and supply chain components. The environmental payback is most sensitive to the number of automobile trips shifted to high-speed rail, and for greenhouse gases is likely to occur in 20–30 years. A high-speed rail system that is deployed with state-of-the-art trains, electricity that has met renewable goals, and in a configuration that endorses high ridership will provide significant environmental benefits over existing modes. Opportunities exist for reducing the long-distance transportation footprint by incentivizing large automobile trip shifts, meeting clean electricity goals and reducing material production effects.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2012-03-16

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Sustainability of intercity transportation infrastructure: assessing the energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions of high-speed rail in the U.S

Description

In the U.S., high-speed passenger rail has recently become an active political topic, with multiple corridors currently being considered through federal and state level initiatives. One frequently cited benefit of

In the U.S., high-speed passenger rail has recently become an active political topic, with multiple corridors currently being considered through federal and state level initiatives. One frequently cited benefit of high-speed rail proposals is that they offer a transition to a more sustainable transportation system with reduced greenhouse gas emissions and fossil energy consumption. This study investigates the feasibility of high-speed rail development as a long-term greenhouse gas emission mitigation strategy while considering major uncertainties in the technological and operational characteristics of intercity travel. First, I develop a general model for evaluating the emissions impact of intercity travel modes. This model incorporates aspects of life-cycle assessment and technological forecasting. The model is then used to compare future scenarios of energy and greenhouse gas emissions associated with the development of high-speed rail and other intercity travel technologies. Three specific rail corridors are evaluated and policy guidelines are developed regarding the emissions impacts of these investments. The results suggest prioritizing high-speed rail investments on short, dense corridors with fewer stops. Likewise, less emphasis should be placed on larger investments that require long construction times due to risks associated with payback of embedded emissions as competing technology improves.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2011