Transportation in US ( & World)

Chapter 15 & Companion focus car; part of the story. Transportation is central to the economy. [Ref: History of goods tranport.] [EU27-goods-method-by-year]

Goods Transported by Country 1997
Mode China EUJapanUS
Road 3% 44% 92%28%
Rail 72% 8% 8%37%
Pipe 3% 3% 0%17%
Inland-Sea 23% 4% 0%10%
Short-Sea n.a.41%n.a.8%
Total (B ton-km)182328703315935
Ref-97 Transport Fact Book; US-EU-98: US DOT-FHA also

Railroads. In US and Japan (> 1987) goods-transporting railroads are private. EU railroads are "connected" with national governments. China is dithering with privatizing. While federally subsidized roads do carry goods of greater value, US railroads transport goods long-distance (avg. 1355 km).

People Transport

People Transported in Country, 1998
Percentage UsePeople Moved
AutoBusRailAir(B pas-km)
Ref:Transport Fact Book
Changes since 1970: ↑ , ↓ range 20-100%; ⇑ , ⇓ > 200%

Auto is winning. But EU/US Rail factor of 7 is relevant. EU rail moves a lot of people; passenger trains have the right of way over goods, reverse of US.

No. of cars/1000 residents US: UNECE 437 (2005), US DOT 475 (2000); EU-15: BFS 469 (2000).

Transported InterCity Goods

Left column. 2001 date in order of
Ton-miles as is curve above ⇑
Ton, last two emphasizing the truck.
Revenue (water 2%)

Bashing the Car

20% of US Energy for car operation
25% of US retail sales for cars
8% of US GNP connected with car expenditures
20%+ of US deaths are car related
  volatile organic cpds → photochemical smog;
  CO replaces oxygen in blood, can't be good;
  Lead causes brain damage;
  nitrogen and sulfur oxides → acid rain
55% of car travel < 10 miles
55% of commuting has only 1 occupant
  what about walking, bicycle, motorcycle, bus?
Rotten fuel economy
SUVs   Don't you feel guilty?


Transportation in US ( & World)
[Monday, 18-Dec-2017 02:03:15 EST]
Edited by: on Wednesday, 24-Aug-2011 11:51:17 EDT