Reduce Staff Vehicles Miles Traveled

Wind TurbineReducing the amount of fuel consumed by park employees is a significant way to reduce Park emissions and serve as an example for visitors. By engaging in actions such as offering staff teleworking opportunities, developing staff carpooling and ensuring efficient fleet vehicle purchases, your park can significantly reduce emissions from transportation.


Technology iconSince the 1920s, the National Park Service has developed transportation systems in the national parks primarily for the private auto. There are currently over 8,055 miles of roads and parkways, 1,252 bridges, 60 tunnels, and extensive parking facilities. To solve the growing congestion problem throughout the Service, there are 63 visitor transit systems in 50 parks that vary in size ranging from single vehicle vans to bus fleets. Staff can play an important role in setting an example of climate friendly transportation. Consider the following options:

  • Develop an integrated planning process for reducing vehicle miles traveled (VMT) in park operations (e.g., employ a shuttle system between park units, coordinate water shuttles and land-based public transportation)
  • Use video or teleconferencing during meetings to reduce the need for transport between units
  • Incorporate transportation infrastructure during the building and facility planning process Expand opportunities for alternative public access to the various units in the park (e.g., public transportation to park assets)
  • Establish carpooling information and support services for staff
  • Establish an alternative fuel employee shuttle system
  • Replace Gasoline and Diesel Vehicles with Alternative Fuel and More Efficient Vehicles
  • Establish a bicycle fleet to encourage the use of bicycles by employees for short trips within the park

Economic Savings

Economic Savings iconIt is estimated that the average cost per passenger vehicle in the United States is $3,878 a year. But the direct costs of purchasing and maintaining a car, paying for gas and oil, insurance, registration and parking only represent a portion of the true costs of driving. Consider the costs associated with automobiles such as road construction and maintenance that are paid for less directly, via taxes and fees. Since those costs aren't paid for directly by car owners, they usually aren't calculated as costs of driving. In addition, there are the other hidden environmental and social costs that both drivers and non-drivers pay.

Quick Web Links
Calculate your commuting costs
Calculate the cost of driving different vehicles

Environmental Benefits

Environmental Benefits icon
Pollutant Problem Amount Saved VMT Reduced/Year Pollution or Fuel Consumption Reduced or Saved/Year
Hydrocarbons(Urban ozone [smog] and Air Toxics) 3.5 grams/mile 10,000 77 lbs of HC
Carbon Monoxide (Poisonous gas) 25 grams/mile 10,000 550 lbs of CO
Nitrogen Oxides (Urban ozone [smog] and Acid Rain) 1.5 grams/mile 10,000 33 lbs of NOx
Carbon Dioxide(Global warming) 1.0 pound/mile 10,000 9,900 lbs of CO2
Gasoline 0.05 gallon/mile 10,000 500 gallons of gasoline


Links iconDeveloped by the Office of Personnel Management and the General Service Administration the Interagency Telework Site provides access to guidance issued by both agencies. It provides information for employees who think they might like to telecommute (or are already doing so), for managers and supervisors who supervise teleworkers, and for agency telework coordinators.

Launch in 1998, the NPS Alternative Transportation Program Website provides information on policies, projects and activities related to planning, partnering, and implementation of alternative transportation systems within and to National Park System units.

Sponsored by the Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency, the Fuel Economy Web Site is designed to help the public factor energy efficiency into their car buying decisions. This site offers information on the connection between fuel ecocomy, advanced technology, and the environment.

Formerly the Office of Mobile Sources, EPA's Office of Transportation and Air Quality protects public health and the environment by controlling air pollution from motor vehicles, fuels, and nonroad equipment, and by encouraging travel choices that minimize emissions.

The U.S Department of Energy Clean Cities Program is designed to encourage the use of alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs) and their supporting infrastructure throughout the nation. Unlike traditional command-and-control programs, the Clean Cities program takes a unique, voluntary approach to AFV development, working with coalitions of local stakeholders to help develop the AFV industry and integrate this development into larger planning processes.

TravelMatters! is website from the Center for Neighborhood Technology that provides a trio of resources - interactive emissions calculators, online emissions maps, and educational content - that emphasize the relationship between more efficient transit systems and lower greenhouse gas emissions. TM's Emissions Calculator allows users to conceptualize how much carbon dioxide they emit due to their travel decisions. The site also offers transportation emissions by county for all contiguous states.