The innovations making travel and transport more sustainable

Travel that doesn’t rely on fossil fuels is not yet widely accessible to everyone. So we need solutions that span carbon reduction, removal and nature restoration.

Faith Sayo

Faith Sayo

11 Dec, 2023

The innovations making travel and transport more sustainable

In today's interconnected world, travel has become an integral part of our lives. Transport for business, trade and tourism are big contributors to economic growth and cultural exchange, however they also bear a considerable responsibility for greenhouse gas emissions. It's important to recognise the delicate balance between travel and sustainability by making informed choices that minimise impact on the planet while still allowing us to be mobile and go far.

Travel that doesn’t rely on fossil fuels is not yet widely accessible to everyone. So, while the technology, pricing and policies develop, we need solutions that span carbon reduction, removal and nature restoration.

In this article, we’ll look at the impact of travel, the innovations happening right now, and reveal an exciting new partnership for Earthly that anyone with a car can get involved with!

How travel has impacted climate change so far

Travel and transport have a significant impact on climate change through their contributions to greenhouse gas emissions. 

The transportation element of tourism accounts for the largest share of its impact, accounting for about 75% of the total emissions. Air travel is the most carbon-intensive mode of transportation, with short flights emitting 255g of CO2 per passenger kilometre. Petrol-powered cars follow closely behind at 192g, while diesel cars fare slightly better at 171g. 

The emissions from travel contribute to climate change in several ways:

  • Increased greenhouse gas concentrations: The CO2 and other greenhouse gases released from travel add to the growing concentration of these gases in the atmosphere, trapping more heat and causing global temperatures to rise.

  • Ocean acidification: The absorption of CO2 by oceans leads to ocean acidification, which harms marine ecosystems and disrupts the food chain.

  • Extreme weather events: Climate change increases the frequency and intensity of extreme weather events causing heat waves, storms, and droughts.

shipping containers

What kind of technology is reducing the impact of travel?

While reducing the amount we use fossil-fuel-reliant modes of travel is extremely important, there are many reasons why people will need to continue to travel. However, plenty of new technology and innovations are transforming the way we travel and potentially lightening our footprint:

  • Electric Vehicles (EVs): Electric vehicles have zero-tailpipe emissions so offer a cleaner and more sustainable alternative to conventional gasoline-powered vehicles. Additionally, the Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) Technology in electric vehicles not only draws power from the grid but also returns excess energy to it. This bidirectional flow of energy helps balance the grid and makes electric vehicles more integrated into the overall energy ecosystem.

  • E-bikes and e-scooters: E-bikes and e-scooters have emerged as popular and convenient modes of transportation in urban areas. These electric micro-vehicles provide an eco-friendly and enjoyable way to navigate, reducing reliance on cars and mitigating traffic congestion. 

  • Hybrid technology: Hybrid vehicles combine traditional internal combustion engines with electric propulsion, offering improved fuel efficiency and reduced emissions. They are particularly effective in urban settings where frequent starts and stops occur.

  • Alternative fuels: The development and use of alternative fuels like biofuels, hydrogen, and compressed natural gas (CNG) offer cleaner alternatives to traditional fossil fuels. For example, the aviation industry is exploring the use of biofuels derived from sustainable sources, such as algae or waste, to lower the carbon footprint of air travel. Ongoing research and development aim to improve the fuel efficiency of aircraft, reducing emissions per passenger-mile.

  • The Green Insurer concept: The Green Insurer is an innovative approach to incentivising low-impact driving. Through a mobile app, The Green Insurer monitors driving habits and rewards individuals for adopting fuel-efficient and environmentally conscious driving techniques. By reducing mileage and adopting eco-conscious driving practices, drivers can earn rewards and contribute to a greener environment.

cycle lane

Earthly partner with The Green Insurer

We are proud to announce our new partnership with

The Green Insurer

, who are on a mission to address the environmental impact of car travel. This exciting collaboration combines Earthly's commitment to investing in nature-based solutions with The Green Insurer's visionary approach to promoting sustainable driving.

At the heart of this partnership is The Green Insurer's unique concept, designed to transform the way individuals engage with their daily commute and travel habits. The Green Insurer operates on a multifaceted strategy that involves carbon reduction, removal and supporting nature:

  • App-tracked driving: Driving is tracked through a user-friendly app, providing real-time insights into your driving habits. This includes factors like distance travelled, fuel efficiency, and overall carbon footprint.

  • Rewards for driving less and better: Your driving habits affect environmental outcomes. The Green Insurer incentivises users to adopt greener practices, such smoother and less driving, avoiding unnecessary idling, and employing fuel-efficient techniques. By promoting a reduction in overall mileage, The Green Insurer fosters a culture of conscious travel, aligning with Earthly's commitment to minimising unnecessary carbon emissions.

  • Offsetting: Every 14-days, The Green Insurer calculates how much carbon has been produced by your car, then offsets this impact through high-quality nature-based projects.

Through this collaboration, Earthly ensures that the offsetting efforts not only remove carbon from the atmosphere but also contribute to the restoration of local biodiversity and support communities on the frontline of climate change. 

We’re delighted to be working with The Green Insurer who are shaking up the automotive and insurance industries, and putting nature first. 

charging an electric vehicle