Those travelling by local trains cause least pollution while a car-user harms the environment 13 times more.

This came to the fore when the Hyderabad-based environment consultancy group Cerena Foundation computed carbon emission caused by various human activities. The group conducted a workshop on Friday here to provide hands-on training in assessing carbon emissions. It was organised by the city-based environmental group Citizens Forum.

According to a ready-reckoner supplied to the participants at the workshop, a train emits 13 gm of carbon dioxide (CO{-2}) per passenger per kilometre, followed by bus (17 gm, and 23 gm if it is air-conditioned), two-wheeler (50 gm), autorickshaw (130 gm), car (175 gm), and aircraft (140 gm, in the case of short haul and 110 gm in the case of long haul).

The participants were told that all human activities could be linked to carbon emissions. They were also trained in evaluating carbon emission in cooking, house construction and consumption of food and so on with pre-computed parameters such as cereals (500 gm of CO{-2} a kg a month), edible oil (1,750 gm/kg/month), meat (1,500 gm/kg/month), vegetables (750 gm/kg/month), and sugar (400 gm/kg/month).

Earlier, Sagar Dhara of the Hyderabad-based foundation said that the world was heading towards an energy crisis, which could lead to conflicts between people and nations.

While consumption of petrol and diesel was at its peak now, a similar scenario could be witnessed in the case of natural gas in about two decades. The discovery of new sources of fuel had tapered off. The prices of fossil fuel would go up sharply in the years to come, leading to collapse of economies.

Shortage of uranium for nuclear power generation was a well-kept secret and thorium-based power production had not worked well so far. Overexploitation of energy resources was releasing a huge quantity of carbon into the atmosphere, he said.

More In: Mangaluru