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Home > Feature Articles > Logistics and Vehicle Fleet Management > Goods Movement

Trains in Southern California - Alternative for Consumers and Goods

Trains offer an energy and air quality alternative: A train uses up to 70% less energy and causes up to 85% less air pollution than a jet aircraft.

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A train uses up to 70% less energy and causes up to 85% less air pollution than a jet aircraft.

Aircraft taking off and landing use a great deal of fuel, producing extremely high emissions of CO2 per passenger; short 1 hour flights have the greatest environmental impact. Intercity trains are easiest on the environment for the equivalent journey.

Business travel agents are increasingly offering their corporate clients the ability to select which flight to book based on carbon impact. Travel planning can now include comparisons with rail alternatives in order to present alternatives.

A British company is highlighting the environmental benefits of travel by train in comparison with air or road transportation by publishing headline facts and figures on

U.S. energy comparison information is available from

California provides options for trains that include both short and long travel options. Trains, commuter trains and bus lines connect for broad access to California communities. Here are some of the Southern California train-centric resources.

LOS ANGELES AREA gives consumers a broad range of resources to play your travel for work, family transportation and fun outings.

Riding the Los Angeles Metro System: Fine timetables, bus map, rail map, bike map and information about other regional carriers.

Los Angeles has an aggressive development program to expand Metro service areas. This timeline shows that history. You can find more information of coverage maps on their website or by calling them.

  • Metro Orange Line (2005)
  • Metro Gold Line (2003)
  • Metro Blue Line (1990)
  • Metro Green Line (1995)
  • Metro Red Line (1993, 1996, 1999, 2000)
Metro also supports additional services such as: Union Station FlyAway, Car Pool Lanes - Metro funds development of Car Pool Lanes in cooperation with Caltrans, and Bicycle Paths - Metro helps fund bicycle routes in LA County.


Metropolitan Transit System in San Diego provides regional services and connections with the following regional transit services.
  • Amtrak
  • Greyhound
  • Los Angeles MTA
  • Metrolink Trains
  • Orange County Transit
  • Riverside Transit


Need longer distance travel around California? Caltrans offers transportation not only for individuals but for the goods that make up the furnishings, cars, food and clothing in our way of life. It's interesting to learn more about how huge California's transportation infrastructure is. And this knowledge makes you want to "buy local" to reduce the pollution caused by diesel trucks, trains and planes.

Caltrans is the state agency responsible for highway, bridge, and rail transportation planning, construction, and maintenance.

One recent Southern California development project is the Alameda Corridor, a $2.4 billion freight rail expressway between the neighboring Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach and the rail yards near downtown Los Angeles. Completed in 2002, the Alameda Corridor has spawned related projects aimed at de-bottlenecking transportation corridors through dedicated, grade-separated lines

Amtrak California provides consumer transportation on a variety of "branded" train routes:

  • Pacific Surfliner
  • San Joaquin
  • Coast Starlight
  • Yosemite Day Tours
You can find helpful information about train travel in a variety of ways: Amtrak California Station Stops from Adelanto Junction to Yosemite National Park. Telephone information for all stations (1-800-USA-RAIL). Map of train routes and state supported intercity rail and feeder bus routes: MAP of CALIFORNIA Train Routes


One reason to consider mass transit as a cost effective, and timewise option is highway congestion. You can find online highway information that can help you decide whether mass transit is a good option for you. Current highway conditions for all California highways, provided by Caltrans. When traveling in the state of California, the Reno/Lake Tahoe, and the greater Las Vegas areas, try Caltrans' toll-free voice activated phone service, 800.427.7623 (800.GAS.ROAD).


Wikipedia's volunteer contributed overview of the Caltrans background and operations provides interesting insights and polite conversation details!

Edited by Carolyn Allen, owner/editor of California Green Solutions
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