An inhabitant of an urban centre produces two times less CO2 than the average to get to his place of work or study

David Levy, pôle Analyse territoriale, Insee et Thomas Le Jeannic, SOeS

Transport is responsible for a significant proportion of pollutant and greenhouse gas emissions, mainly carbon dioxide (CO2). Despite favourable technical developments, CO2 emissions caused by household travel increased by 10% between 1990 and 2007. Indeed, the distances covered have increased and the population has risen in number. In 2007, people living in France produced 640kg of CO2 on average to get to their place of work or study. Cars were responsible for 90% of these emissions, for 64% of journeys made and 70% of distances covered. The residents of urban centres produced two times less CO2, thanks to more frequent use of public transport and by walking. But positions in large cities are also held by people living in the suburbs or residents of other cities who travel longer distances, most often by car. Their average emissions were significantly higher. Certain urban areas were more “eco-efficient” than others. Large urban areas encourage the use of public transport, while small urban areas allow travel to work on foot or by bike.

Insee Première
No 1357
Paru le : 23/06/2011