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at least 25 percent of the trips will be newly generated.

That's dwarfed by the energy efficiency and CO2 emission improvement for the trips replacing car and plane trips.

In the study Kågesson also concluded that one million yearly single trips on a typical 500 km line resulted in a reduction of about 9,000 tons of CO2-equivalents. That is about the same amount as the yearly personal emissions of 900 EU citizens. Considering that building the line causes millions of tons of CO2 emissions, 9,000 tons is negligible.

Considering that the line will be there for many decades at least, comparing annual CO2 savings from just one million trips with construction emissions is silly. And road building and airport building have CO2 emissions, too.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Mon Nov 8th, 2010 at 03:09:17 PM EST
Here in California the High Speed Rail Authority has decided to pursue 100% renewable energy sources for the trains, which helps fuel development of large-scale solar and wind projects by ensuring they will have a reliable customer for their power.

And the world will live as one
by Montereyan (robert at calitics dot com) on Tue Nov 9th, 2010 at 02:41:47 AM EST
[ Parent ]
An additional point: construction-related CO2 emissions come mostly from the manufacture of cement and steel. There is research into a significant reduction of both. From what I remember, at least steel production is possible in a system closed from the viewpoint of the carbon cycle (i.e. without burning coal).

However, you can't make air travel carbon-free, however you tax it.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Tue Nov 9th, 2010 at 04:39:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Both are in theory carbon neutral: steel is produced by the removal of oxygen from iron ore (mostly haematite: Fe3O4) which can be done by any number of processes given enough energy.  Concrete is made my ejecting CO2 from limestone (plus a whole slew of things involving silicate and aluminate), but this CO2 is absorbed by the concrete as it cures (except in some special types of concrete).
by njh on Tue Nov 9th, 2010 at 06:48:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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