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Monica Araya


9th, 10th, 11th, 12th


Science, Social Studies, Earth and Space Sciences, Civics

Regional Focus

Global, Europe


Downloadable MP4/M4V

How Cities Are Detoxing Transportation

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  • In this TED Talk, Monica Araya, an electrification advocate, describes how cities can take the lead in decreasing greenhouse gas emissions by electrifying their transportation systems. 
  • She describes multiple initiatives around the world that are transforming cities through shifting to emissions-free options for transportation. 
Teaching Tips


  • The speaker highlights many benefits of reducing emissions beyond just the climate impacts.
  • The speaker explains how reducing emissions in cities is also an issue of environmental justice.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Teachers may want to print the transcript ahead of time so students can read it as they watch the video.
  • Teachers may want to review the link provided in the "learn more" section, or the resources provided in Monica Araya's resource list to share with students.
  • The subtitles and transcript are offered in 13 different languages.


  • Students could use the ideas in this video to create a proposal for how their city could better incorporate emissions-free transportation.
  • This resource could be paired with this video about other solutions to reduce traffic in cities, or this activity that guides students through creating their own transportation audit and action plan. 
Scientist Notes
This video presents strategies deployed by Urban cities to reduce carbon emissions from transportation and other sectors. This is recommended for teaching.

This resource addresses the listed standards. To fully meet standards, search for more related resources.

  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • HS-ESS3-2 Evaluate competing design solutions for developing, managing, and utilizing energy and mineral resources based on cost-benefit ratios.
  • College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
    • Dimension 2: Civics
      • D2.Civ.5.9-12 Evaluate citizens' and institutions' effectiveness in addressing social and political problems at the local, state, tribal, national, and/or international level.
    • Dimension 4: Taking Informed Action
      • D4.7.9-12 Assess options for individual and collective action to address local, regional, and global problems by engaging in self-reflection, strategy identification, and complex causal reasoning.
  • Related Resources


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