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High Speed Travel Goes Green

New planes and trains feature eco-friendly engineering

Treehugger TravelTreehugger TravelEcotourism is getting big bucks, but it seems like you can only go green if you stick close to home. Time for a reality check. Two new options are (almost) ready to whisk you across the country - or the world, without leaving behind a giant footprint.

The Airbus A380

Best known for sex scandals in the private rooms, this mega plane also packs mega-benefits for the earth. It was designed so that a more environmentally friendly fuel could be used - without costly modifications. Gas to liquid fuel (GTL) means we're getting close to using renewable biofuels - so air travel can escape Al Gore's most wanted list.

GTL is still pretty gross on the carbon front, but you can breathe a little easier knowing that its emissions are free of air-quality destroying sulfur. Expect the already eco-friendly A380 to be using GTL on Qantas in 2009.

Alstom's AGV

AGV is just a fancy French way of saying "train so fast you think you're flying." With engines underneath all passenger cars, it has the power to move people from Chicago to Rhode Island in under three hours. An Italian company will start running the trains in 2011, taking their high speed network to 186mph.

If you can't wait, carbon offsets aren't the same as cutting back on emissions, but they still do the world some good. Save time by buying them online or take the time to start your own green initiative.

Got your own green advice? Let us know!

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