Bicycle Fixation Weblog
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06/28/2007: "Trains, Speed, & Energy"
Just received a link to an interesting brief at the French SNCF (national railway) website about the relative energy efficiency of bullt trains vs. cars and planes on the Paris-Marseille run. French trains (and all true bullet trains) are electric, of course, and the electricity comes from a variety of sources, so they've translated the energy use into a comparative figure in kilos-of-oil equivalency (koe):
- TGV (bullet train): 9.6 koe/passenger
- Automobile: 28.8 koe/passenger
- Airplane: 32.2 koe/passenger
Naturally, slower trains would use less energy, but, as the article points out, then they would not capture market share from the far-more-polluting aircraft.
The short article is availabe at On Track to Energy Efficiency, in English.
So do as we did on our trip to San Jose: load your bike on a train, kick back and enjoy the trip and the good company, and have your favorite ride with you when you get there!