The New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority's (MTA) carbon emissions have been verified by The Climate Registry and publicly reported on its Website for the first time.
The Climate Registry is a non-profit organization that operates the only North American voluntary greenhouse gas registry. Using the verified figures and a methodology developed by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), the MTA has been able to determine that New Yorkers avoid emitting 17.4 million metric tons of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere because of the MTA's network of subways, buses and commuter trains.
"We now know how much carbon MTA operations emit each day. But more importantly, we also know how much carbon is prevented from entering the atmosphere when 8.5 million people per day choose to ride the train or the bus instead of drive their cars," said Ernest Tollerson, MTA director of policy and media relations.
Using the methodology developed by APTA, in cooperation with the MTA and other U.S. transit agencies, consulting firms, nonprofits and academics, the MTA enables New Yorkers to avoid emitting 8.24 units of carbon for every unit the MTA emits through its operations. That means that New Yorkers avoid emitting 19.8 million metric tons of carbon a year. At the same time, its network of subways, buses, commuter trains, paratransit vehicles, bridges and tunnels releases 2.4 million metric tons of carbon annually. The net result is a savings of 17.4 million metric tons of carbon throughout the course of the year.
The MTA's 2008 greenhouse gas inventory was independently verified by Santa Barbara, Calif.-based Ryerson, Master and Associates Inc. (RMA), a member of the Lloyds Register group of entities, and a leader in climate change policy, carbon footprinting and greenhouse gas verification.