Sustainability Opportunities In Transportation Essay

1422 words - 6 pages

Sustainability Opportunities in Transportation"The most widely used definition of sustainable development, from the Brundtland Commission, is the basis of most definitions of sustainable development in various disciplines: development that meets the need of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs (Jeon, n.d.)." This generic definition of sustainable development is clearly applicable to several disciplines. Unfortunately, sustainability in transportation specifically, hasn't been a primary focus for transportation service providers, shippers, or the public until recent years. This is significant because all modes of transportation negatively affect sustainability to an extent: Whether it's the harmful emissions they produce or the nonrenewable natural resources they deplete. For decades this has been overlooked, partly because the rapid growth and development of more efficient modes of transportation has continuously progressed. This causes people to focus on keeping up rather than getting left behind. The world has evolved and globalization has increasingly emerged causing goods, services, and people to rely on transportation more than ever before. Now the inevitable has surfaced, and implementing sustainable transportation operations has become crucial for the entire world (Pisarski, 2010). With this realization taking effect, more and more people have begun to implement such strategies. "A literature review indicates that operational definitions of sustainable transportation systems should at least capture attributes of system effectiveness and system impacts on economic development, environmental integrity, and the social quality of life (Jeon, n.d.)." This definition gives us the three dimensions of comprehensive sustainability; environmental, economic, and socio-cultural sustainability. This paper will provide a few opportunities for everyone, but specifically transportation service providers, to positively impact sustainability moving forward. Each of the following three sustainability opportunities is reflected through the development and execution of a Fleet Safety and Standards Program. The program outlines three practices: reduced speed management, consistent attention to tire pressure, and the use of onboard computer systems.The following opportunities may seem extremely basic, but do not underestimate their potential impact on all three dimensions of sustainable transportation. It is essential that transportation service providers implement fleet safety and standards programs. These programs should include driver training courses that promote efficiency and set specific standards that drivers must meet. Research has shown that approximately 35% of fuel consumed by semi-trucks is directly related to driver behavior (Whistler, 2011). Applicable driver behaviors include; speed management, braking techniques, shifting techniques, use of cruise control, and maintaining consistent optimal...

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