Energy and Environmental Footprints of Urban Travel: The Case of the City of Montreal

Transport-related emissions and energy consumption pose severe threats to the environment and the human health. However, previous studies have found that transport users are generally unaware of their energy and environmental footprints. To address this gap in their knowledge, the authors simulate and estimate fuel consumption and emissions resulting from driving in Montreal, under various traffic conditions. They combine the results of a macroscopic travel demand model (EMME) and a motor vehicle emissions simulator (MOVES) to determine emission/fuel rates. Next, the authors monetize the estimated rates using the average 2017 fuel price, the marginal social damage cost of carbon, and the associated health-related costs of major criteria-air pollutants. Using all the aforementioned information, the authors found several interesting results. First, travel costs vary significantly for different road and vehicle types, and different congestion levels. When traveling on highways, the fuel cost ranges from $0.12/km to $0.55/km for passenger cars and 2 to 4 times higher for trucks. The emissions cost is $0.04/km to $0.11/km for passenger cars and astonishingly higher (around 10 times) for trucks. Second, although the passenger car emissions costs seem relatively small, the annual health-related emissions cost can sum up to around $1900 for regular drivers in Montreal, on average. Finally, the Montreal CBD and the Plateau areas have the highest general variable travel costs (with the addition of travel time costs) which could reach up to $4.48/km during peak hours. This general travel cost is almost 5 times the cost of driving in the western boroughs of Montreal ($0.86/km).

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • This paper was sponsored by TRB committee ADC20 Standing Committee on Transportation and Air Quality.
  • Corporate Authors:

    Transportation Research Board

  • Authors:
    • Daher, Nayer
    • Bai, Song
    • Moradi, Ehsan
    • Do, Wooseok
    • Rouhani, Omid
  • Conference:
  • Date: 2019


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Figures; Maps; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 22p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01698070
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: 19-05613
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Mar 1 2019 3:51PM