Travel Green with Amtrak

According to the 2019 U.S. Department of Energy Data Book, Amtrak is 47 percent more efficient than traveling by car and 33 percent more efficient than domestic airline travel on a per-passenger-mile basis. In addition to rail travel offering lower emissions per passenger mile, Amtrak has been reducing fuel and energy usage year-over-year with several initiatives including energy efficiency upgrades, improved train handling, and more energy efficient locomotives. Since 2010, we have reduced our greenhouse gas emissions by 17%, which is equivalent to removing roughly 42,000 passenger vehicles from the road.

For more information on our sustainability initiatives, goals and greenhouse gas inventory, take a look at the Amtrak Sustainability Report.

Source: Transportation Energy Data Book, Edition 37, 2019

What is a Carbon Footprint?

A carbon footprint is a measure of the effect you have on the climate in terms of the amount of greenhouse gases you produce (measured in units of carbon dioxide). Many of your daily activities generate carbon emissions which have an impact on the health of the environment. You can reduce your carbon footprint by offsetting your rail travel with contributions to projects like reforestation, renewable energy development and energy efficiency technologies.

To get a sense of how your travel on Amtrak will impact your carbon footprint, enter the city and state of your origin and destination, along with the number of passengers into the Rail Calculator. If you're traveling long-distance off the Northeast Corridor, break your travel into smaller segments for the calculator. For example, if you’re traveling from Chicago to Los Angeles by train, your segments would be Chicago to Kansas City, Kansas City to Albuquerque, and Albuquerque to Los Angeles. Check out our interactive travel planner to find the best route segments.