Photo credit (banner): Seb Godefroy

Do you brag about taking the train ?

Choosing a mode of transport that generates a lesser carbon footprint has become a source of pride as more people boast on social media about their choice to take the train, including to reach destinations outside the borders.

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Record number of tickets sold, overnight trains coming back in fashion, and slow-travel on the rise… Because it is more eco-friendly, rail travel has become more attractive in light of the climate crisis.

This trend is showcased through « tågskryt », a Swedish word, much like « flygskam », which became popular a few years back. It literally means train-bragging, i.e. posting on social media to boast about your choice to travel by train instead of driving or flying, for example.

Younger generations show the way

Young people aware of environmental issues are increasingly turning to trains instead of other means of transportation. According to a poll conducted by the Fondation Jean Jaurès about the way the French view plane travel, 27% of people aged between 18 and 24 claim they are giving up on flying for ecological reasons first.

The transportation sector generates the most greenhouse gases. According to the simulator engineered by Ademe, the French ecological transition agency, if you take a TGV to travel between Paris and Barcelona, you generate 2,6 kg CO2e1 vs 191 CO2e when you fly between the two cities.

Try the Ademe simulator

A standing ovation

Greenpeace activists gave a standing ovation to travelers getting off trains in Gare de Lyon, in Paris, as a way to congratulate them for choosing to ride a train instead of flying or driving.

A standing ovation

1 Global warming potential (GWP) is the heat absorbed by any greenhouse gas in the atmosphere, as a multiple of the heat that would be absorbed by the same mass of carbon dioxide (CO2). Carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e or CO2eq or CO2-e) is calculated from GWP. For any gas, it is the mass of CO2 that would warm the earth as much as the mass of that gas. Thus it provides a common scale for measuring the climate effects of different gases.