After six consecutive years of gradual increases in vehicle-miles traveled (VMT), the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) released new year-end estimates yesterday showing total U.S. driving fell by 13.2% – from 3.3 trillion VMT in 2019 to 2.83 trillion in 2020. This decrease equates to an estimated reduction of nearly 170 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions.
“As the Biden Administration works to get the pandemic under control and rebuild the economy, the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) is committed to building back better,” said Acting Federal Highway Administrator Stephanie Pollack. “As we get Americans back to work, we will do our part to offer cleaner transportation options, by investing in transit, and safer streets for biking and walking.”
The latest VMT data, published in FHWA’s December 2020 “Traffic Volume Trends” report – a monthly estimate of U.S. road travel – show that, combined, all miles driven on public roads and highways in 2020 is the lowest since 2002. Nationwide closures of businesses, schools and other economic factors related to the nation’s ongoing health crisis are thought to be key factors in the year’s estimated 430.2 billion VMT decrease.
Despite a significant reduction in overall traffic volume, preliminary data from the USDOT show that roadway fatalities fell only slightly – by an estimated 2% for the first six months of the year.
Article by: CollsionWeek