American Public Transportation Association
 
American Public Transportation Association
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 Dump the Pump Transit Facts

Help Spread the Word About the Many Benefits of Public Transportation
on National Dump the Pump Day
Thursday, June 20, 2013

The 8th annual National Dump the Pump Day on June 20 is a day to highlight that when gas prices are high, using public transportation is a great alternative to driving that will help people save money.

We know what happens when gas prices are high. Many people park their cars and take public transportation instead. In fact, using public transportation is an economical way to beat high gas prices…if it is available. According to APTA’s most recent Transit Saving Report, a two-person household can save, on the average, more than $9,700 a year by downsizing to one car.

At a time when our economy is still hurting and gas prices are continuing to rise, people need to save money. This is a time to increase public transportation service, not decrease it. However, Congress has yet to pass a long overdue surface transportation bill that will increase public transportation investment. State and local revenues that fund public transportation have declined since the economic recession started and that has also negatively impacted public transit systems’ budgets. All levels of government – federal, state, and local – should invest more in public transportation.

From urban to suburban to rural communities, public transportation is a vital resource to Americans, and a cornerstone of our nation’s economy. Relying on public transit for their daily mobility needs, Americans use local public transportation systems to commute to and from work, to travel to school and the doctor’s office, to go shopping, and to visit with family and friends. Public transportation use reduces our nation’s dependence on foreign oil by 4.2 billion gallons of gasoline a year and it also saves 37 million metric tons of carbon emissions annually. Last, but not least, public transportation has a proven track record of reducing congestion. The latest research shows that in 2011, U.S. public transportation use saved 796 million hours in travel time, 450 million gallons of fuel, and $21 billion in congestion costs in 498 urban areas.

Quick Facts

  • In 2012, Americans took 10.5 billion trips on public transportation.
  • 35 million times each weekday, people board public transportation.
  • Public transportation is a $57 billion industry that employs more than 400,000 people.
  • More than 7,300 organizations provide public transportation in the United States.

Public Transportation Helps People Save Money

  • Using public transportation is the quickest way to beat high gas prices.
  • According to APTA’s Transit Saving Report, a two-person household can save, on the average, more than $9,700 a year by downsizing to one car.
  • Public transportation provides an affordable, and for many, necessary, alternative to driving.

Public Transportation Provides Economic Opportunities

  • Every $1 billion invested in public transportation creates and supports 36,000 jobs.
  • Every $1 invested in public transportation generates approximately $4 in economic returns.
  • Every $10 million in capital investment in public transportation yields $30 million in increased business sales.
  • Every $10 million in operating investment yields $32 million in increased business sales.

Public Transportation Saves Fuel and Reduces Congestion

  • Public transportation has a proven record of reducing congestion.
  • The latest research shows that in 2011, U.S. public transportation use saved 865 million hours in travel time and 450 million gallons of fuel in 498 urban areas.
  • Without public transportation, congestion costs in 2011 would have risen by nearly $21 billion from $121 billion to $142 billion.

Public Transportation Reduces Gasoline Consumption

  • Public transportation use in the United States saves 4.2 billion gallons of gasoline annually.
  • Households near public transit drive an average of 4,400 fewer miles than households with no access to public transit.

Public Transportation Reduces Carbon Footprint

  • Public transportation use in the United States reduces our nation’s carbon emissions by 37 million metric tons annually. This is equivalent to Washington, DC; New York City; Atlanta; Denver; and Los Angeles combined stopping using electricity. 
  • One person with a 20-mile round trip commute who switches from driving to public transit can reduce his or her daily carbon emissions by 20 pounds, or more than 4,800 pounds in a year.
  • A single commuter switching his or her commute to public transportation can reduce a household’s carbon emissions by 10 percent and up to 30 percent if he or she eliminates a second car.

Public Transportation Enhances Personal Opportunities

  • Public transportation provides personal mobility and freedom for people from every walk of life.
  • Access to public transportation gives people transportation options to commute to work, go to school, visit friends, or travel to a doctor’s office.
  • Public transportation provides access to job opportunities for millions of Americans.

 

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