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Plymouth Commuter Trends Revealed

Author: geraldine v Published: 18th February 2022 11:56

The number of commuters in Plymouth has dropped by 6% since the pandemic began, with 94% of workers in the city commuting to work before March 2020, compared to 88% who commute now according to survey research revealed today.

There has been an increase in workers surveyed commuting by car with figures showing 59% before March 2020 compared to 63% now.

While driving is still the most popular form of transport for commuting, the survey revealed that 3% travelled by bus, 3% cycled, and 16% walked. E-scooters are now used by 3% of commuters surveyed to get to their place of work.

14% of people in Plymouth surveyed travel less than one mile to work on the commute, 11% travel 1-2 miles, 32% travel more than 2 mile up to 5 miles, 11% travel more than 5 miles up to 10 miles and just over 7% travel over forty miles to get to work.

Before March 2020 fewer people surveyed (10%) commuted less than a mile to work and the same figures (10%) made a journey of more than forty miles on their commute.

Commuter miles by car, bus and train are contributing to the carbon emissions in the city and polluting the air. When asked about their reaction to this under 2 in 5 (34%) workers surveyed in Plymouth agreed* that they wish there were an easy way for them to offset their carbon emissions from commuting to work. Over 2 in 5 (44%) workers agreed* they would be interested in buying solar panels for their house to offset their carbon footprint caused by their commute and over a third (38%) agreed* people should buy solar panels to offset their carbon footprint caused by their commute.

Solar panels reduce households' carbon footprint and solar energy produces little or no emissions when it is converted to electricity. As a natural, renewable source, solar energy can be replenished unlike fossil fuels which are finite. The Energy Saving Trust estimates the average UK home with a solar PV system installed could reduce carbon emissions by 1.3 to 1.6 tonnes per year depending on location in the UK. 1.3 tonnes of carbon emission is equivalent to the amount of CO2 emissions that come from using 536 gallons of petrol or charging 607,904 smartphones. A standard solar PV system in the UK will avoid 39 tons of carbon dioxide over 30 years which is equivalent to a medium-sized petrol car driving 90,000 miles.

Simon Peat, CEO of Project Solar UK who commissioned the research on Plymouth commuters and their thoughts on solar energy, said, "Commutes have dropped in the past year and just over 2 in 5 (41%) workers surveyed in Plymouth agreed that given the choice, they would choose to work from home to reduce their carbon footprint through not commuting. We are witnessing a surge in interest in using solar panels in the home to help reduce carbon emissions as Plymouth residents seek out ways to look after the environment."



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