Sustainability has been enshrined in the official claims of mega sporting events, and scholarly debates persist on how to achieve environmental stewardship and a prolonged legacy. Revitalizing the public transportation system with alternative fuel bus technologies has speculated significant environmental and socio-economic benefits to the host nation. This paper thus attempts to quantify and analyze the environmental, social, and economic impacts of alternative fuel buses throughout their entire life cycle stages to support the thought process of sustainable mobility practices in hosting mega-events. A hybrid, multi-regional Input-Output (MRIO) based life cycle sustainability assessment (LCSA) model is developed to assess three bus types: compressed natural gas (CNG), electric buses (EBs), and diesel buses (DBs). The results are investigated in terms of a combination of various manufacturing and end-of-life scenarios by encompassing impacts embedded in the global supply chains. A scenario-based analysis is then conducted to assess the impacts and associated benefits of EB compared to alternative bus technologies in host nations, during and post-event, taking the upcoming FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ as a case. The results for the MRIO analysis demonstrate the impacts embedded in the global supply chains and on-site benefits of adopting alternative fuel buses may compromise each other, as impacts might be shifted towards other countries (through manufacturing and end-of-life, in exporting countries) while minimizing the operation phase impacts in the importing country, Qatar. Even though the economic benefits of EBs are higher than the CNG buses, and with almost similar social benefits, the environmental impact of the CNG buses inside the host nation is much less than the DBs. This would thus make CNG buses a more balanced alternative than the DBs and EBs. The outcome of this research stays as an eye-opener to the local organizing committee of mega-events to rethink the current sough alternatives for the use of electric transit with more balanced alternatives as proposed in the study, to achieve the mandated carbon neutrality and environmental footprint mitigation goals.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Environmental Engineering
- Environmental Chemistry
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering