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Investigating the impacts of weather variability on individual's daily activity-travel patterns: A comparison between commuters and non-commuters in Sweden
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Transport Science, Transport Planning, Economics and Engineering.
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Transport Science, Transport Planning, Economics and Engineering.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-7124-7164
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Transport Science, System Analysis and Economics.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-5290-6101
2015 (English)In: Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, ISSN 0965-8564, E-ISSN 1879-2375, Vol. 82, 47-64 p.Article in journal (Refereed) PublishedText
Abstract [en]

Understanding travel behaviour change under various weather conditions can help analysts and policy makers incorporate the uniqueness of local weather and climate within their policy design, especially given the fact that future climate and weather will become more unpredictable and adverse. Using datasets from the Swedish National Travel Survey and the Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute that spans a period of thirteen years, this study explores the impacts of weather variability on individual activity-travel patterns. In doing so, this study uses an alternative representation of weather from that of directly applying observed weather parameters. Furthermore, this study employs a holistic model structure. The model structure is able to analyse the simultaneous effects of weather on a wide range of interrelated travel behavioural aspects, which has not been investigated in previous weather studies. Structural equation models (SEM) are applied for this purpose. The models for commuters and non-commuters are constructed separately. The analysis results show that the effects of weather can be even more extreme when considering indirect effects from other travel behaviour indicators involved in the decision-making processes. Commuters are shown to be much less sensitive to weather changes than non-commuters. Variation of monthly average temperature is shown to play a more important role in influencing individual travel behaviour than variation of daily temperature relative to its monthly mean, whilst in the short term, individual activity-travel choices are shown to be more sensitive to the daily variation of the relative humidity and wind speed relative to the month mean. Poor visibility and heavy rain are shown to strongly discourage the intention to travel, leading to a reduction in non-work activity duration, travel time and the number of trips on the given day. These findings depict a more comprehensive picture of weather impact compared to previous studies and highlight the importance of considering interdependencies of activity travel indicators when evaluating weather impacts.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2015. Vol. 82, 47-64 p.
Keyword [en]
Weather variability, Activity-travel patterns, Long term and short term impacts, Structural equation model, Commuters and non-commuters, Sweden
National Category
Transport Systems and Logistics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-180625DOI: 10.1016/j.tra.2015.09.005ISI: 000366777200004ScopusID: 2-s2.0-84942305121OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-180625DiVA: diva2:896078
Note

QC 20160120

Available from: 2016-01-20 Created: 2016-01-19 Last updated: 2016-05-16Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Understanding the Impacts of Weather and Climate Change on Travel Behaviour
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Understanding the Impacts of Weather and Climate Change on Travel Behaviour
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Human behaviour produces massive greenhouse gas emissions, which trigger climate change and more unpredictable weather conditions. The fluctuation of daily weather corresponds to variations of everyday travel behaviour. This influence, although is less noticeable, can have a strong impact on the transport system. Specifically, the climate in Sweden is becoming warmer in the recent 10 years. However, it is largely unknown to what extent the change of travel behaviour would respond to the changing weather. Understanding these issues would help analysts and policy makers incorporate local weather and climate within our policy design and infrastructure management.

The thesis contains eight papers exploring the weather and climate impacts on individual travel behaviour, each addressing a subset of this topic. Paper I explores the weather impact on individual’s mode choice decisions. In paper II and III, individual’s daily activity time, number of trips/trip chains, travel time and mode shares are jointly modelled. The results highlight the importance of modelling activity-travel variables for different trip purposes respectively. Paper IV develops a namely nested multivariate Tobit model to model activity time allocation trade-offs. In paper V, the roles of weather on trip chaining complexity is explored. A thermal index is introduced to better approximate the effects of the thermal environment. In paper VI, the role of subjective weather perception is investigated. Results confirm that individuals with different socio-demographics would have different subjective weather perception even given similar weather conditions. Paper VII derives the marginal effects of weather variables on transport CO2 emissions. The findings show more CO2 emissions due to the warmer climate in the future. Paper VIII summaries the existing findings in relations between weather variability and travel behaviour, and critically assesses the methodological issues in previous studies. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2016. 217 p.
Series
TRITA-TSC-PHD, 16-005
Keyword
impacts of weather, climate change, travel survey, spatial heterogeneity, activity-travel pattern, weather perception, passenger transport CO2 emission
National Category
Transport Systems and Logistics
Research subject
Transport Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-187019 (URN)978-91-87353-89-5 (ISBN)
Public defence
2016-06-10, L1, Drottning Kristinas väg 30, Lantmäteri, våningsplan 3, KTH Campus, Stockholm, 11:05 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Projects
Understanding the complexity of changes of travelers’ activity-travel choices and related transport CO2 emissions due to the variation of weather and climate in Sweden (Centre för Transport Studie, projekt kod: 446)Understanding the impacts of weather and climate change on travel behavior (Centre för Transport Studie, projekt kod: 291)
Note

QC 20160516

Available from: 2016-05-16 Created: 2016-05-16 Last updated: 2016-05-16Bibliographically approved

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