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UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

A trip-based approach to modelling urban transportation greenhouse gas emissions for municipalities Rahman, Md. Nobinur


Transportation has always been a major source of Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions all over the world. The fifth assessment report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has reported that the transportation sector was responsible for 14% of the total emissions in 2010. In Canada, transportation has been the second largest source of GHG emissions in 2012. Therefore, cutting transportation-related GHG emissions has become a top priority on the international agenda. Many international governments have announced aggressive GHG emissions reduction targets. In response, numerous research efforts have looked at developing tools to model the effect of various transportation and land use policies on GHG emissions reduction. However, most of the developed models are context specific and vary greatly in complexity (e.g. network-wide, corridor-wide, etc.) and level of detail (i.e. macro, meso, and micro). Thus, they cannot be used in other settings. In addition, little has been reported on monitoring progress towards meeting municipal GHG emissions reduction targets. To contribute to this issue, this research presents a TRIp-Based Urban Transportation Emissions (TRIBUTE) model for municipalities. TRIBUTE integrates two main components: a discrete mode choice/shift model and an emissions forecasting model. Given personal, modal, and land use information, the mode choice/shift model calculates the proportion of trips made by different travel options (e.g. car, bus, walk, etc.). The total Vehicle Kilometres Travelled (VKT) by each mode is then calculated by multiplying the proportion of trips made by each mode by respective average VKT. Finally, total GHG emissions are calculated by multiplying the total VKT by each mode by respective average emissions factors. TRIBUTE is intended to assist municipalities (especially those with no detailed transportation network model) explore the impacts of various transportation and land use planning policies on changing travel behavior, and subsequently GHG emissions from passenger transportation. The City of Kelowna, BC, Canada is selected as a case study. The model validation results show a difference of only 0.3% in GHG emissions between the model prediction and the historical data.

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