The strike by BART union workers is having a costly environmental impact on the Bay Area, according to data assembled by the Bay Area Council that shows increased traffic congestion is generating almost 16 million pounds of carbon, and wasting almost 800,000 gallons of gas every day at a cost of almost $3.3 million.
“The BART union strike is not only increasing congestion on our roads, it’s polluting our air,” said Jim Wunderman, President and CEO of the Bay Area Council. “BART plays a valuable role in removing cars from the road and the greenhouse gas emissions they generate. With more cars on the road and idling in traffic, this strike is taking a severe economic toll on the region and it’s harming our environment.”
The Bay Area Council used traffic and emissions data from the Texas Transportation Institute to develop its estimates. The 16.2 million pounds of additional carbon being generated as a result of the strike is equal to the weight of 267 BART cars or almost 7.4 metric tons.
The environmental cost comes on top of the $73 million a day that the Bay Area Council Economic Institute estimates the BART union strike is costing the region in lost worker productivity. That economic impact is a very conservative estimate and doesn’t include direct economic activity that could add tens of millions of dollars to the cost.