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Air Pollution and Seasonality Effects on Mode Choice in China

Li, W; Kamargianni, M; (2017) Air Pollution and Seasonality Effects on Mode Choice in China. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board , 2634 pp. 101-109. 10.3141/2634-15.

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Abstract

A modal shift from motorized to nonmotorized vehicles is imperative to reduce air pollution in developing countries. Nevertheless, whether better air quality will improve the willingness to use nonmotorized transport remains unclear. If such a reciprocal effect could be identified, a sort of virtuous circle could be created (i.e., better air quality could result in higher nonmotorized transport demand, which in turn could further reduce air pollution). Developing countries may, therefore, be more incentivized to work on air pollution reduction from other sources to exploit the extra gains in urban transport. This study investigated the impact of air pollution on mode choices and whether nonmotorized transport was preferred when air quality was better. Revealed preference data about the mode choice behavior of the same individuals was collected during two seasons (summer and winter) with different air pollution levels. Two discrete mode choice models were developed (one for each season) to quantify and compare the impacts of different air pollution levels on mode choices. Trip and socioeconomic characteristics also were included in the model to identify changes in their impacts across seasons. Taiyuan, a Chinese city that operates a successful bikesharing scheme, was selected for a case study. The study results showed that air quality improvement had a significant, positive impact on nonmotorized transport use, which suggested that improvements in air quality and promotion of nonmotorized transport must be undertaken simultaneously because of their interdependence. The results of the study could act as a harbinger to policy makers and encourage them to design measures and policies that lead to sustainable travel behavior.

Type: Article
Title: Air Pollution and Seasonality Effects on Mode Choice in China
DOI: 10.3141/2634-15
Publisher version: http://pubsindex.trb.org/view/2017/C/1438670
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > Bartlett School Env, Energy and Resources
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Economics
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10037536
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