Caltrain is committed to supporting sustainability in the San Francisco Bay Area. Caltrain promotes sustainability by providing affordable, accessible, environmentally beneficial mobility options to help people get to where they live, work and play. Its Sustainability Program monitors the agency’s operational impacts on communities and the environment, and finds ways to lessen those impacts. Caltrain also encourages environmental stewardship by its employees, customers and partners.

Sustainability Benefits of Riding Public Transit

Caltrain riders promote sustainability in many ways that benefit the community. By:

  • Reducing greenhouse gas emissions and climate change impacts.
  • Decreasing fossil fuel consumption
  • Save money on gas, insurance and registration, wear and tear, maintenance.
  • Mitigating traffic congestion
  • Improving regional air quality

Sustainability Program Framework

Sustainability is a key component of Caltrain’s vision and Strategic Plan. The San Mateo County Transit District’s Sustainability Policy summarizes Caltrain’s commitment to integrating sustainability into standard operating procedures and long-term decision-making.

Caltrain is a strong supporter of the American Public Transportation Association’s Sustainability Program and participates in the annual Sustainability & Public Transportation Workshop as well as APTA’s Sustainability committees. In 2010, the District became a founding signatory to the APTA Sustainability Commitment. Caltrain holds the Silver Level APTA Sustainability Commitment certification.


2023 Caltrain Sustainability Report 
In 2023, Caltrain published its biennial sustainability report, including data from FY2021 and FY2022. Key achievements during the reporting years include: 

  • Displaced GHG emissions (avoided single occupancy vehicle trips) increased over 200% 
  • Reduced facility energy usage by ~16% 
  • Decreased total waste generated by over 15% 

Read the 2023 Sustainability Report. (6.96 MB, PDF)

2021 Caltrain Sustainability Report
In 2021, Caltrain published its biennial sustainability report, including data from FY2019 and FY2020. Key achievements during the reporting years include: 

  • Generated GHG emissions reduced 11% 
  • Reduced facility electricity usage by 7% 
  • Decreased total waste generated 19% between FY2018 and FY2020 

Read the 2021 Sustainability Report. (6.9 MB, PDF)

2019 Sustainability Report
Caltrain’s second sustainability report includes data from FY2017 and FY2018. Key achievements during the reporting years include: 

  • Net GHG emissions reduced by 44% 
  • Facility emissions down 71% 
  • Reduced both its diesel consumption and Criteria Air Pollution generation by 7%, even while ridership increased 

Read the Executive Summary. (455 KB, PDF)
Read the 2019 Sustainability Report. (8.75 MB, PDF)

2017 Caltrain Sustainability Report
In August 2017, Caltrain published its first Sustainability Report, which summarizes key environmental sustainability achievements and trends for Caltrain operations in FY2010 through FY2016. Key achievements include: 

  • Ridership increased by 73% over the past 7 years 
  • In response to California’s historic drought, Caltrain implemented several water-saving conservation measures, and decreased water consumption by more than 33% between FY2010 and FY2016 
  • Caltrain’s net GHG emissions declined by 22,474 metric tons of CO2e in FY2016 compared to FY2010. This reduction is equivalent to removing 4,747 vehicles from the road 

Read the 2017 Sustainability Report (7.24 MB, PDF)

Energy Procurement Strategy Study
Caltrain prepared an analysis of its options for procuring electricity to supply its future electrified demand.

Read the Executive Summary. (814 KB, PDF)
Read the Energy Procurement Strategy Report. (6.98 MB, PDF)

Board Presentations

June 2019- Findings & Award of Energy Service Contract for Energy-efficient Lighting Retrofit at Caltrain Stations (471 KB, PDF)

November 2018- Update on Community Choice Energy Cost for Caltrain Electricity Service (627 KB, PDF)

February 2017 - Update on Community Choice Energy and Caltrain Electricity Service (137 KB, PDF)

May 2016 - Community Choice Energy and Caltrain Electricity Service (275 KB, PDF)

February 2016 - Caltrain Water Consumption and Conservation (229 KB, PDF)

March 2015 - Caltrain Sustainability Program (249 KB, PDF)