Guide to Calculating Mobility Management Benefits Victoria Transport Policy Institute
Pollution Reduction Motor vehicle use emits various types of air, noise and water pollution. Air pollution causes human illness, disability and death, and various types of ecological damages. Noise pollution causes distraction and stress, and so reduces property values along roads with heavy traffic. Water pollution causes ecological damages.
Pollution Reduction Subcategories
Reduced air pollution reduces human illnesses.
Aesthetic benefits of cleaner and clearer air.
Reduced greenhouse and acid rain impacts.
Reduce noise pollution.
Reduced water pollution.
Mobility management strategies that reduce vehicle travel tend to reduce pollution emissions. Reductions in short trips and congested vehicle travel provide relatively large emission reductions, freight travel reductions provide large benefits per vehicle-mile, and reductions in urban travel tend to provide relatively large benefits due to high exposure (many people live or work close to roadways). Reductions in vehicle ownership tend to provide extra water pollution reductions, since some vehicles drip fluids when parked. Some strategies, such as smart growth and traffic calming, may increase emissions per vehicle-mile, but by reduce total emissions by reducing total vehicle travel.
Pollution Reduction Effectiveness
Congestion pricing Emission fees Fuel tax increases
Walking & cycling improvements
Commute trip reduction programs & incentives
School and campus transport management
Smart growth Traffic calming Flextime
Smart growth and traffic calming may increase emission rates per vehicle-mile, but tend to reduce per capita emissions.
Transit & HOV improvements
Rideshare programs Traffic speed management Freight transport managem
Parking management & pricing
This table identifies how various mobility management strategies reduce pollution costs.
Conventional transport planning often considers certain pollution costs when evaluating major projects, but not when evaluating smaller projects. Monetized pollution cost estimates typically range from 1¢ to 10¢ per vehicle-mile (Delucchi 1998; Litman 2009). Many of these estimates only account for a portion of total vehicle pollutants (many estimates overlook urban noise, road dust and climate change emissions) and so tend to undervalue the full emission reduction benefits of reduced vehicle mileage.