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The Social Cost of Automobility, Cycling and Walking in the European Union

Gössling, Stefan LU ; Choi, Andy; Dekker, Kaely and Metzler, Daniel (2019) In Ecological Economics 158. p.65-74
Abstract

Cost-benefit-analyses (CBA) are widely used to assess transport projects. Comparing various CBA frameworks, this paper concludes that the range of parameters considered in EU transport CBA is limited. A comprehensive list of criteria is presented, and unit costs identified. These are used to calculate the external and private cost of automobility, cycling and walking in the European Union. Results suggest that each kilometer driven by car incurs an external cost of €0.11, while cycling and walking represent benefits of €0.18 and €0.37 per kilometer. Extrapolated to the total number of passenger kilometers driven, cycled or walked in the European Union, the cost of automobility is about €500 billion per year. Due to positive health... (More)

Cost-benefit-analyses (CBA) are widely used to assess transport projects. Comparing various CBA frameworks, this paper concludes that the range of parameters considered in EU transport CBA is limited. A comprehensive list of criteria is presented, and unit costs identified. These are used to calculate the external and private cost of automobility, cycling and walking in the European Union. Results suggest that each kilometer driven by car incurs an external cost of €0.11, while cycling and walking represent benefits of €0.18 and €0.37 per kilometer. Extrapolated to the total number of passenger kilometers driven, cycled or walked in the European Union, the cost of automobility is about €500 billion per year. Due to positive health effects, cycling is an external benefit worth €24 billion per year and walking €66 billion per year. CBA frameworks in the EU should be widened to better include the full range of externalities, and, where feasible, be used comparatively to better understand the consequences of different transport investment decisions.

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author
organization
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Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Ecological Economics
volume
158
pages
10 pages
publisher
Elsevier
external identifiers
  • scopus:85059449808
ISSN
0921-8009
DOI
10.1016/j.ecolecon.2018.12.016
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
0b6e2d6b-19f9-420e-826b-1c6a47ed8aaa
date added to LUP
2019-01-17 11:57:20
date last changed
2019-01-27 05:33:47
@article{0b6e2d6b-19f9-420e-826b-1c6a47ed8aaa,
  abstract     = {<p>Cost-benefit-analyses (CBA) are widely used to assess transport projects. Comparing various CBA frameworks, this paper concludes that the range of parameters considered in EU transport CBA is limited. A comprehensive list of criteria is presented, and unit costs identified. These are used to calculate the external and private cost of automobility, cycling and walking in the European Union. Results suggest that each kilometer driven by car incurs an external cost of €0.11, while cycling and walking represent benefits of €0.18 and €0.37 per kilometer. Extrapolated to the total number of passenger kilometers driven, cycled or walked in the European Union, the cost of automobility is about €500 billion per year. Due to positive health effects, cycling is an external benefit worth €24 billion per year and walking €66 billion per year. CBA frameworks in the EU should be widened to better include the full range of externalities, and, where feasible, be used comparatively to better understand the consequences of different transport investment decisions.</p>},
  author       = {Gössling, Stefan and Choi, Andy and Dekker, Kaely and Metzler, Daniel},
  issn         = {0921-8009},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {65--74},
  publisher    = {Elsevier},
  series       = {Ecological Economics},
  title        = {The Social Cost of Automobility, Cycling and Walking in the European Union},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ecolecon.2018.12.016},
  volume       = {158},
  year         = {2019},
}