The nature of public transportation lends itself to increased individual sustainability. It keeps people from relying on the polluting, petroleum-dependent, greenhouse gas-emitting and sprawl-inducing automobile. In other words, public transportation is a responsible environmental choice, reducing energy use and carbon footprints.
Taking public transportation far exceeds the combined benefits of using energy-efficient light bulbs, adjusting thermostats, weatherizing a home and replacing a refrigerator. If an individual switches a 20-mile roundtrip commute to public transportation, his or her annual CO2 emissions will decrease by 4,800 pounds per year, equal to a 10% reduction in a two-car household’s carbon footprint.
Many public transportation systems, including IndyGo, are investing in environmentally friendly vehicles such as hybrid buses. IndyGo has 18 hybrid buses in its fleet. These “green machines” incorporate the latest hybrid technology, resulting in fuel savings, reduced emissions and smoother, quieter rides.
Furthermore, IndyGo, with the help of federal funding, has made great strides in incorporating sustainable practices into its own operational processes, including:
Because of these efforts and more, the Greater Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce named IndyGo a member of its Green Business Initiative in March 2010, recognizing the company’s proactive engagement in environmentally responsive and “green” business operations. IndyGo was also a Sustainability Awards finalist in 2009 and an award recipient in the 2010 Sustainability Awards program hosted by SustainIndy.
IndyGo’s goal is to always consider the sensible and sustainable choices when doing business. If we're encouraging people to start riding the bus to help save the environment and gain greater energy independence, we should be setting the same kinds of examples in our internal efforts.
While taking transit is good for the environment, studies show that individuals who utilize public transportation reduce their risk for obesity, diabetes and hypertension. By choosing the bus, you're adopting healthy lifestyle patterns such as walking and cycling.
Since all IndyGo buses have two-unit bike racks that are super easy to use, it's never been a better time to enjoy Indianapolis amenities such as Monument Circle, The Monon Trail, The Cultural Trail, The Canal Walk and White River State Park.
So, consider riding your bike—possibly in conjunction with IndyGo—a few times a week to get to work or run errands. This low-cost transportation can help you stay fit and reduce the carbon emissions in the Indianapolis air.
The below map shows IndyGo's connectivity with the city's great outdoor amenities. Download the map here.
Read more about IndyGo's facility, fleet and transit stop improvement plans: IndyGo ARRA Stimulus Funding Presentation.
IndyGo as a company is committed to implementing sustainable initiatives. Read an article about these efforts in an August 2009 article in Passenger Transport. IndyGo also participates in the CICAP program, along with several other Indiana businesses and organizations.
IndyGo isn't the only company concerned about sustainability in Indianapolis. Check out these programs and organizations that are also dedicated to "greening" the city.