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Nearly a third of the carbon footprint of households is made up of transport. By making smart transport choices, such as cycling instead of driving, you can reduce your carbon footprint, nurture local nature, and maintain your own health as well as the health of others.
A child pushing a bike on a metro platform.
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Traffic is also one of the biggest sources of air pollution in cities and urban areas. According to the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL), particulate air pollution causes more serious health problems in developed countries than all other environmental factors combined.

Tips for sustainable transport

Use public transport.

Public transport is a quick and significantly more environmentally friendly way to travel than private motoring. For many localities, there is a public transport route guide that helps with routes and schedules.

Favour using your muscles: walk or ride a bike.

Emissions from muscle-powered transport are almost non-existent compared to other alternatives.

Use a private car only for obligatory trips.

There is no denying the ease of driving. But try other modes of transport than the car and combine trips when you need to use the car. Give preference to nearby services that you can reach by walking or cycling.

Avoid flying.

One long-distance flight may cause more carbon dioxide emissions than one year of private motoring.

Arrange ridesharing.

Carpooling or ridesharing is a more environmentally friendly way to travel, if, for example, it is necessary to travel by car during a trip to the cottage. You can save on car expenses too!

Rent a car or take advantage of a variety of car sharing services.

These are especially suitable if you only need a car occasionally.

Choose green electricity or another low-emission energy source as the driving power of your vehicle.

The popularity of electric cars is growing for a good reason: they are more ecological than fossil-powered cars and their operating costs are often quite low.  

Remember the new mobility technologies, such as e-bikes and e-scooters.

Electrically-assisted modes of transport can be especially good for medium-length trips. They are often cheaper than a car but require much less physical exertion than riding a regular bike.

Transport and housing choices are interconnected

While living in urban centres can be expensive, in sparsely populated areas more money may be spent on transport due to distances. In sparsely populated areas, public transport services are often not as comprehensive as in urban areas. Moreover, transport choices are affected by, for example, your financial situation and the flexibility of your work.

Sustainable transport choices require planning

We need to think about how best to combine our everyday activities and our transport needs into one journey. As an example, cyclists must equip their bikes so that it is easy to transport groceries. Being able to safely store a bicycle and take a shower at work or school is also important for cyclists. Many workplaces already support public transport and employees who bike to work, for instance by offering tickets to public transport or bicycles as benefits. The advantage of cycling and walking to work is that you also get the necessary exercise and health benefits.

When buying a car, it is worth comparing different options. For example, if you invest in an electric car that is more expensive than an average petrol car, your investment may end up being cheaper over a ten-year period due to lower operating costs.

Rethinking your holiday travel is also worthwhile: for example, switching from flying to train travel significantly reduces the environmental load.

Calculate the climate effects of your modes of transport.
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Tips for sustainable travelling


Finnish Environment Institute (Syke)
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Smart ways for transport
Everyday activities for climate-friendly movement.
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