Rail is Greener than Flying

Rail travel emits approximately ten times less CO2 than flying to the same destinations.

Eurostar commissioned some detailed research to find out exactly how much CO2 is produced on one of their Eurostar journeys.

The bottom line was that flying between London, Paris and Brussels generates ten times more emissions of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide (CO2) than travelling by Eurostar.

The numbers

Here are the vital statistics.

Trip/Mode kg CO2 per passenger trip (return) Emissions saved by travelling on Eurostar equivalent to g CO2 per passenger km
London-Paris (return)  
Short-haul air (average) Heathrow 122 Charging 740 ipods 168
Eurostar 10.9 11
London-Brussels (return)  
Short-haul air (average) Heathrow 345 hrs on a laptop 219
Short-haul air (average) Gatwick 222 35 London sightseeing bus tours. 322
Eurostar 18.3 24.3

The source

The research was carried out by an independent consortium of Paul Watkiss Associates and AEA Technology Environment. It uses detailed data on electricity supplies, power station emissions and transmission losses; Eurostar and airline load factors; and the range of aircraft and engine types and emissions.

The future of travel is here

Taking the train is now a truly attractive greener alternative to flying. Here are a few reasons why it’s now the most seamless way to travel through Europe.

High Speed 1, the new high speed line from St. Pancras International, runs straight into the heart of London, meaning faster journey times to and from the Continent. A new European partnership of high-speed operators, Railteam, is making connecting train travel in Europe even simpler, smoother and more seamless than ever.