The Pollution-Routing Problem

Tolga Bektaş, Gilbert Laporte

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

910 Citations (SciVal)


The amount of pollution emitted by a vehicle depends on its load and speed, among other factors. This paper presents the Pollution-Routing Problem (PRP), an extension of the classical Vehicle Routing Problem (VRP) with a broader and more comprehensive objective function that accounts not just for the travel distance, but also for the amount of greenhouse emissions, fuel, travel times and their costs. Mathematical models are described for the PRP with or without time windows and computational experiments are performed on realistic instances. The paper sheds light on the tradeoffs between various parameters such as vehicle load, speed and total cost, and offers insight on economies of 'environmental-friendly' vehicle routing. The results suggest that, contrary to the VRP, the PRP is significantly more difficult to solve to optimality but has the potential of yielding savings in total cost.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1232-1250
Number of pages19
JournalTransportation Research Part B: Methodological
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2011


  • Energy consumption
  • Greenhouse gas emissions
  • Time windows
  • Vehicle routing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Transportation


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