METRO Going Green
It’s a Fact
More than one million people have moved to the Greater Houston area
over the past 10 years. And with the region’s population continuing to
rocket skyward, METRO is taking the lead to reduce traffic congestion on
our roadways and help “clear the air” for us all.
Green is Good
Going green is more than just a catchy phrase; it’s a way of life that METRO has adopted and is continuing to build on every day. Of course, no matter how you look at it, everything begins with our buses. METRO currently operates a fleet of more than 1,230 buses – and approximately 40 percent of our fleet has been converted to hybrid technology.
METRO's modern fleet features more than 440 clean-running, diesel-electric hybrid buses:
- Economical – buses use less diesel and reduce fuel costs
- Low Maintenance – require less maintenance, resulting in overall lower operating cost
- Clean – nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions are reduced by as much as 50 percent
- Quiet – noise levels rival that of a passenger car
- Smooth – riders will find the hybrid buses more comfortable
- Clean Energy – hybrid buses draw from two energy
sources: a clean-diesel, heavy-duty engine combined with a drive unit
and electric energy from batteries located on the roof of the vehicle
- Traffic-friendly – the diesel-electric system
works well in frequent stop-and-go service due to the electrically
driven propulsion system, which has high torque at low speeds, providing
smooth and fast acceleration
We’re Just Getting Started.
Replacing our older buses with new, fuel-efficient,
environmentally-friendly vehicles was merely the first step. The METRO
Red Line, our region’s first light-rail line, will soon be joined by
three rail lines – the North, Southeast and East End – which will
provide effortless travel to and from some of the city’s busiest and
most congested areas.
Going the Extra Green Mile
Diesel-electric hybrid buses and METRORail are just two of the
authority’s most prominent efforts, but METRO is also working green
behind the scenes:
METRO recycles the water it uses to clean its fleet of 1,230 buses,
saving 7,308 gallons of water with every washing of the fleet.
METRO regularly recycles all scrap metal, tires, batteries, wood
palettes and motor oil. Older buses are also being “scrapped,” as
opposed to reselling.
METRO uses green-tipped fluorescent lamps, which contain lower levels of mercury, to light its facilities.
Limited Idle Time
METRO buses have been designed to automatically shut down when sitting idle for approximately 15 to 20 minutes.
From the road to rail and all of our facilities in between, METRO is
making a conscious effort to efficiently minimize its impact on the
Bikes on Buses
When two wheels just aren’t enough, METRO’s bikes-on-buses program
affords cyclists the convenience of mounting their bike on the front of
our local buses (limit two per bus) or storing it in the luggage
compartment of our commuter buses.
Cyclists may also bring their bike aboard METRORail during specific
hours. On weekdays, bikes are allowed from 4:30 a.m. to 6:30 a.m.; 9
a.m. to 3 p.m.; and after 6 p.m. On weekends, bikes are allowed all day
long – limit two bikes per train.
Please note that bike space on all METRO vehicles is available on a first-come, first-served basis.
When our buses or trains aren’t an option, METRO helps
commuters “go green” by forming vanpools through the Star vanpool
program. Star vans offer commuters without convenient bus service
options from communities and/or to worksites in the eight-county region
(Harris, Galveston, Brazoria, Fort Bend, Waller, Montgomery, Liberty and
Chambers). Currently, 708 Star vans carry more than 7,000 riders,
totaling more than 200,000 trips each month.
Annually, the vanpool program is responsible for helping to eliminate
more than 25,000 tons of carbon dioxide, 500 tons of carbon monoxide,
65 tons of hydrocarbons and 45 tons of nitrous oxides that might
otherwise be emitted by the vehicles they displace.
Get onboard with a METRO STAR vanpool today for more details.
When was the last time someone rewarded you for going green? Well,
NuRide is the nation's largest rewards program for individuals who take
greener trips. Instead of driving solo, registered members get points
for choosing to walk, bike, telecommute, carpool, vanpool, take a
subway, train, bus, ferry or even work a compressed week.
The amount you earn depends on the trips you take and the rewards you
select. Rewards are provided by local and national sponsors and vary
based on where you live and travel. Active NuRide members typically redeem around $300 a year in rewards.
Register online today at www.NuRide.com to get complete details and begin reaping your “green rewards.”
You Can Make a Difference
According to the Federal Transit Administration, the average American
produces 20 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) each year – that’s 121 pounds
every day. One person really can make a difference. Even if you park
your vehicle just one day a week and “go green” with one of the
aforementioned services, you can help reduce greenhouse gas emissions
and improve the environment.
See this fact and others at https://www.transit.dot.gov