Community members encouraged to ride transit more to reduce harmful air pollutants
The City of Boulder is proudly partnering with the Regional Transportation District (RTD) to provide zero-fare services to encourage community members to travel by transit for cleaner air. RTD's “Zero Fare for Better Air,” a statewide initiative to help reduce harmful air pollutants by increasing use of transit, takes place July 1 through Aug. 31.
During the months of July and August, all RTD transit services will be free for riders to board, including local and regional bus routes and Access-a-Ride paratransit service. The City of Boulder, in partnership with RTD and Via Mobility Services, will also provide zero-fare services on the local Boulder HOP bus route that features frequent service between downtown’s Pearl Street, Downtown Boulder Station, University Hill, University of Colorado Boulder, and the 29th Street Mall.
“We are once again proud to partner with RTD and Via to support this initiative,” said City of Boulder Transportation and Mobility Director, Natalie Stiffler. “Regional collaboration and public transit are key strategies to help meet our goals of enhancing equity, increasing access, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.”
Last year, Boulder City Council passed a resolution in support of Zero Fare for Better Air. The initiative clearly aligns with goals laid out in the city’s Transportation Master Plan. Funding for zero fare is made possible through a partnership with the Colorado Energy Office for the second consecutive year of the initiative. This campaign also provides the opportunity to welcome back those whose travel habits have changed because of the pandemic.
In 2021, on-road emissions accounted for 26% of Boulder's greenhouse gas emissions (GHG). By leaving their car at home just two days a week, community members can reduce their GHG emissions by over 3,000 pounds per year.
Other benefits to taking transit include:
- Cost savings
Taking the bus and train saves on car expenses including maintenance, parking and tolls, which add up quickly. A household can save nearly $10,000 by taking public transportation and living with one less car.
- Gas savings
With high gas prices, switching to public transit frees up additional funds in community members’ everyday budgets. Public transportation saves the United States an estimated six billion gallons of gas each year!
- Reduction in traffic
Taking public transit keeps cars off the road, reducing traffic congestion, air pollution and ground-level ozone.
- Reduction in stress
Taking public transit removes the stress and anxiety of battling everyday traffic.
- Time savings
While taking public transit, community members can catch up on reading, emails, podcasts, or just sit back and relax.
- Improved air quality and climate action
Transportation is a major source of greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to our changing climate. Using public transit creates 85% less carbon emissions than driving a car. That is a savings of 63 million metric tons annually, nationwide.
To learn how to hop on board to participate in Zero Fare for Better Air, visit RTD Zero Fare. Find HOP bus service and frequencies at the city's HOP bus webpage. More tips about how to use less gas can be found at How to Use Less Gas.