Written and produced by DAVID FREUDBERG in association with WGBH/Boston

Most people in metropolitan areas face choices when we travel — to go by car or to use public transit? These decisions have a huge impact on our wallets, on the environment and on our quality of life.

Free Listening

Free Listening Listen now or download our four half-hour Passengers documentaries free (mp3 files). World-class experts, colorful personal stories (including winner of the month-long Car-Free Challenge) and cool stereo sounds of trains!

  • Google Transit Going places? Try Google Transit, an amazing free resource. Just enter where you're starting from, where you're going and when. It will give you train, bus, bike and pedestrian options for 448 cities!
  • Calculator This carbon calculator helps you determine how much you could reduce your weekly carbon emissions (associated with climate change) to the extent you switch from cars to using public transportation.
  • Interesting StudiesCheck out interesting studies on the greenhouse gas emissions of transportation, the frustrating problem of traffic congestion, 7 crazy public transportation stories compiled by the Huffington Post, and tons more.
  • Learn about other 'Humankind' programs on the environment from climate-friendly dietary choices to green spiritual congregations.
  • Send us an email with your public transportation stories – or to comment on the 'Passengers' programs. We'll post some comments online.
  • Share on Facebook and help spread the word about transportation choices.

Mike Janssen, Associate Producer. Train Photo by Chris Henchey

Free audio (half-hour segments) of the Passengers public radio series from Humankind. Listen with links below or via iTunes:

Part 1: The story of a Virginia man who accepted his county's "challenge" to go car-free for a month; plus voices of motorists filling up at the pump; bus riders in a low-income neighborhood and others.

Part 2: Business people and environmentalists come together: improved public transportation helps to grow the economy, for lots of reasons. Bankers and the Sierra Club on the same side.

Part 3: What is the global warming footprint of cars vs. public transit? Story of a family seeking a low-carbon lifestyle. Also, hear the views of transportation experts, the president of AAA, and others.

Part 4: Gas taxes you pay at the pump go into a huge pool of federal transportation funds. How should the money be divided up? Plus high-speed rail, pro and con.

MBTA Silver Line Neoplan dual-mode bus at South Station.

MBTA Silver Line Neoplan dual-mode bus at South Station.

Interesting Articles, Sites and Photos

Richard Rodriguez
Richard Rodriguez, Chicago Transit Authority president

DePaul University student riders
DePaul University student riders

M.P. Carter
M.P. Carter, Memphis Area Transportation Authority

Robert Cervero
Prof. Robert Cervero, UC/Berkeley urban planning chair

Larry Hanley
Larry Hanley, Amalgamated Transit Workers president

Betty Turner and Natalie English
Betty Turner, Bank of America, Natalie English, Charlotte Chamber of Commerce

Matt MarylMatt Maryl, Apollo Alliance

John Inglish, Utah Transit Authority CEO
Web Extra! Coming in May.


If you'd like to order the two-CD set of this series, it's available today! ($14.95)

Order now

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