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Transport Toolkit

Developing strategies for clean, efficient transport

The Low Emission Transport Toolkit supports development planners, technical experts, and decision-makers at national and local levels to plan and implement low emission transport systems that support economic growth. This toolkit helps users navigate a variety of resources to identify the most effective tools to build and implement low emission development strategies (LEDS) for the transport sector.


Globally, the transport sector is responsible today for approximately 23% of total energy-related carbon dioxide emissions, and its emissions are increasing at a rate faster than that of any other sector. With countries and cities facing a rising need for transport services over the coming decades, governments have a unique opportunity to meet this demand and enable economic growth while minimizing greenhouse gas emissions through the implementation of comprehensive policies, behavioral change, and adoption of energy efficient technologies for the transport sector.

Showing 1-10 of 39 tools

Comparison of passenger vehicle fuel economy and greenhouse gas emission standards around the world

  • Air quality and greenhouse gas emissions

Nine major regions around the world have implemented or proposed various fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions standards. Yet these standards are not easily comparable due to differences in policy approaches, test drive cycles, and units of measurement. This paper develops a methodology to compare these programs to better understand their relative stringency.

GIZ sourcebook module 5a: Air quality 

  • Impact assessment

This module serves to assist policy-makers and their advisers in developing countries to determine the best measures to abate air pollution with limited information. The material presented draws upon knowledge gained from countries worldwide and provides practical advice to developing countries on how to develop legally enforceable air quality standards and simplified clean air implementation plans.

Electric vehicle charging infrastructure deployment guidelines for the Oregon I-5 metro areas of Portland, Salem, Corvallis and Eugene

  • Governance and public awareness

This document intends to create a common knowledge base of electric vehicle (EV) requirements for stakeholders involved in the development of EV charging infrastructure. EVs have unique requirements that differ from internal combustion engine vehicles, and many stakeholders are currently not familiar with these requirements.

Diesel power: Clean vehicles for tomorrow

  • Fuels and vehicle efficiency

The U.S. Department of Energy has created this series of documents about the history of the diesel engine, its current uses in transportation vehicles, and the challenges it faces relative to increasing efficiency while meeting new emission standards at a competitive cost.

Designing and implementing a freight sustainability program: Tools, best practices and lessons learned

  • Governance and public awareness

This workshop course book outlines best practices and lessons learned in the development and implementation of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s SmartWay Program. The goal of the document is to assist other countries in developing similar programs to reduce energy consumption and emissions associated with the freight transportation sector.

Cleaning the air: A technical guide on autogas

  • Impact assessment

The purpose of this document is to provide technical support information for policymakers aiming to realize a sustainable autogas market. The document addresses environmental advantages of autogas (i.e., well-to-wheel emissions), safety standards and regulations, and fuel composition standards and test methods.

Center for neighbourhood technology

  • Governance and public awareness

Since 1978, Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT) has been a leader in promoting urban sustainability—the more effective use of existing resources and community assets to improve the health of natural systems and the wealth of people, today and in the future. CNT is a creative think-and-do tank that combines rigorous research with effective solutions. CNT works across disciplines and issues, including transportation and community development, energy, water, and climate change.

Case study: Engine idling - Costs you money and gets you nowhere!

  • Fleet management

The Department for Transport Freight Best Practice program works with corporate fleets to test and assess fuel efficiency opportunities. The program conducted a trial with four UK fleets that examined the potential for fuel savings from idle reduction campaigns. All programs were implemented at minimal cost, with education and awareness being the primary focus of investment.

Big ideas: Ahmedabad bus rapid transit

  • Public transport and infrastructure

This video shares the best practices from the world-class Janmarg bus rapid transit (BRT) in Ahmedabad, India. EMBARQ, the World Resources Institute's center for sustainable transport, designed the system.

AVTA: The EV Project

  • Governance and public awareness

The EV Project partnered with city, regional and state governments, utilities, and other organizations in 18 cities to deploy about 12,500 public and residential charging stations.  It also demonstrated 8,650 plug-in electric vehicles.

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Learn about the six key actions necessary to successfully implement a low emission development strategy for the transportation sector
image/svg+xml Evaluate system Implement & monitor Prioritize & plan Develop alternatives Assess opportunities Create baseline Key actions

Assess opportunities

Utilize the Avoid, Shift, Improve framework, to meet growing transport demand with less environmental impact. This approach widens the focus of transport development beyond conventional technologies to include solutions that consider the policies and behaviors driving the demand for transport.

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Evaluate system

Assess the current transport situation in your country or region by researching and evaluating existing plans, policies, practices, strategies and programs related to transport and land use.

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Create baseline

Track emissions and development improvements by establishing baselines that measure current and projected transport demand, supply, greenhouse gas emissions, and land use, assuming no low-emission actions are taken.

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Develop alternatives

Establish development objectives and policy measures, then integrate potential transport development opportunities into various alternative scenarios that would achieve those objectives. The alternative scenarios should be compared with the business as usual scenario in order to determine potential impact.

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Prioritize & plan

Prioritize alternative scenarios based on factors such as economic, environmental, and social benefits & costs, technical & institutional capacity & barriers, and greenhouse gas emission impacts. Once a particular pathway is prioritized, a specific transportation development plan can be adopted, consisting of implementable policies and systems that would result in optimal impacts such as increased employment, enhanced mobility, improved health/safety, expanded market access, reduced congestion, and avoided emissions.

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Implement & monitor

The action plan should define a timetable, roles and responsibilities, financial sources, performance metrics, outreach and partnership activities, and a plan for continuous monitoring and refinement. Proper MRV (monitor/measure, reporting, and verification) mechanisms should be established to ensure desired impact and continued improvement.

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Use the avoid, shift, improve framework to holistically design a sustainable low emission development strategy


Avoid trips taken and reduce travel demand by integrating land use planning, transport infrastructure planning, and transport demand management policies. This integration of planning and policies can result in convenient access to jobs, goods, and services while decreasing road vehicle usage and associated greenhouse gas emissions.

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Shift the way people travel and how freight is moved to more environmentally friendly modes of transport, such as non-motorized transport, mass transit, and car sharing, can reduce overall fuel use and emissions per capita.

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Improvements made to technologies under this framework include the: vehicle level, system level, and institutional level.

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Planning instruments aim to reduce the need for trips with personal vehicles. These instruments focus on promoting cities that are compact, connected and coordinated; a shift to public transport and non-motorized transport options:
  • Land use planning
  • Public transport and infrastructure
  • Non-motorized transport
  • Multimodal integration.

Regulatory instruments are actions that aim to reduce or restrict use of personal vehicles and influence the type of vehicles that should be used:
  • Traffic management
  • Fuels and vehicle efficiency

Economic instruments have two definitions in this toolkit. They can be methods to discourage use of certain forms of transport by putting a price on use (e.g. low emission zones). They can also be traditional and/or innovative financing opportunities to fund transport projects:
  • Financing

Information instruments are ‘soft’ measures that provide knowledge to decision-makers, technical experts and the general public. The objective is inform stakeholders about the impacts of transport options:
  • Governance and public awareness
  • Air quality and greenhouse gas emissions
  • Impact assessment
  • Fleet management.

Technology instruments aim to improve the effectiveness and energy efficiency of transport modes:
  • Shared mobility

Adopted from: GIZ Sourcebook 5e: Urban transport and climate change