The other day, I posted an update to my light rail bet saying that not only was light rail incredibly expensive for the amount of transportation it provides, it is not even clear that it provides any "green" benefits (with "green" today meaning only the potential to reduce CO2, since the global warming hysteria has sucked all of the oxygen out of other environmental goals).
The Antiplanner has more information, this time from the transportation planners in Denver. Normally, transportation planners grossly exaggerate the benefits of their proposed systems, so it is interesting that even they so no net CO2 savings from their proposed rail lines:
The Antiplanner's review
of rail transit and greenhouse gases found that Denver's light-rail
lines produce more greenhouse gases per passenger mile than a typical
SUV. The Gold Line DEIS agrees, admitting that the rail alternative
will result in a regional CO2 increase of 0.034% (see page 3.7-10).
By the way, the Denver system does not do so great on the financial part either:
Now, RTD says the line will cost more than $600 million, which is a
lot for a mere 11 route miles. Moreover, RTD has changed the proposed
technology to something it calls "electric multiple-unit commuter
rail," which sounds something like the Chicago Electroliners or some of
the Philadelphia commuter trains.
For this high price, the DEIS reports incredibly trivial benefits.
The proposed rail line is projected to take 0.0085 percent of cars off
the road. Of course, that's for the region as a whole, but in the
corridor it will take a whopping 0.227 percent of cars off the road. A
handful of buses could do as well.
While that might seem terrible, it actually outdistances our guys here in Phoenix, who are projecting that the next 3.2 mile line here will cost $306 million. While the Denver line is projected to cost $10,300 per foot, the Phoenix line will cost at least $18,000 per foot.