ARTÍCULO

Sustainable mobility: Towards decarbonization

Los Premios Goya, la noche más importante del cine español, no solo celebran el talento y la creatividad de la industria cinematográfica, sino que también están demostrando su compromiso con la sostenibilidad y el cuidado del medio ambiente.

Cities around the world have committed through the Paris Agreement to reducing their carbon emissions by 2030. Searching for alternatives to adapt and prepare for climate change has positive effects on the economy, sustainability and quality of life in cities. cities. Moving towards a sustainable mobility model is an efficient solution to face this challenge and transform our cities towards a decarbonized future.

More than 30% of CO2 emissions in the European Union come from transport. With accelerated population growth and the resulting increase in the number of vehicles on the road, greenhouse gas emissions could increase. Therefore, it is necessary to invest in infrastructure that promotes sustainable and efficient mobility.

Sustainable mobility is based on the principle of using means of transport that minimize environmental impact and promote the efficient use of resources. This includes:

  • Promote active mobility by traveling on foot or using bicycles. https://www.oliverwymanforum.com/mobility/urban-mobility-readiness-index.html
  • Promote the use of electric vehicles and charging accesses.
  • Establish improvements in the accessibility and affordability of public transportation.
  • Develop smart infrastructures that facilitate shared mobility and sustainable logistics.

According to the V Edition of the Urban Mobility Readiness Index published by The Oliver Wyman Forum in collaboration with the University of California, Berkeley, among the 65 cities best prepared for mobility, Helsinki stands out. Taking into account the components described, the Finnish capital has invested heavily in electric vehicle charging infrastructure, bike lanes and has expanded the transport network with new metro and tram projects.

Oslo, for its part, leads the Sustainable Mobility subindex with the goal that all new registrations by 2025 will be zero-emission vehicles. Currently, its fleet of electric vehicles reaches more than 80% of sales in the last 6 months of the year, thanks to its hydroelectric system to generate electricity.

Other cities that are in the Top 10 are Amsterdam, Berlin or Munich, for their renowned cycling culture and promotion of public transport.

To promote sustainable mobility and reduce carbon emissions, it is necessary to implement a series of concrete measures. Some examples that encourage the use of more environmentally friendly means of transportation are:

  • Speed limits: Reducing speed in urban areas and residential zones can significantly help lower greenhouse gas emissions and improve road safety. Additionally, it can encourage the use of alternative transportation methods, such as bicycles or public transportation.
  • Economic incentives for public transportation: Implementing policies to reduce or eliminate transportation fares can incentivize its use over private vehicles. Furthermore, discounts or bonuses can be offered to those who use public transportation regularly.
  • Promoting shared transportation: The use of shared transportation services can reduce the number of vehicles in public spaces and decrease CO2 emissions. Fiscal incentives or discounts can be implemented for those participating in shared transportation programs.
  • Infrastructure for active mobility: Investing in infrastructure that promotes active mobility, such as bike lanes, wide sidewalks, and pedestrian zones, can encourage walking and cycling. These measures not only mitigate emissions but also promote a healthier lifestyle.
  • Promotion of electric vehicles and alternative fuels: Offering fiscal incentives, subsidies, and economic aid for the acquisition of electric vehicles and those that run on alternative fuels like natural gas or hydrogen can accelerate the transition to a cleaner and more sustainable vehicle fleet.
  • Sustainable urban planning: Designing cities with a focus on urban sustainability can reduce car dependency and foster sustainable mobility.

Moving towards sustainable mobility is not only the responsibility of public institutions but also of private companies. The role of both sectors is analyzed below:

Private businesses

  • Urban mobility platforms. Companies like Cabify or Revel offer ride-sharing and rental services. Through them, the efficient use of vehicles is promoted and the number of cars on the streets is reduced. In addition, many of these companies are betting on the electrification of their fleets, incorporating electric vehicles.
  • Vehicle manufacturers. Automotive companies are increasingly investing in the development of electric vehicles and other alternative propulsion technologies. By producing more efficient and less polluting vehicles, they contribute to the reduction of carbon emissions associated with transportation. Tesla is the undisputed leader in this market.
  • Logistics and distribution companies. Delivery using electric vehicles and cargo bikes, as well as route optimization, minimizes emissions and reduces traffic congestion. Correos Express delivers some of its products on electric motorcycles as an alternative to make its operations more sustainable.

Public institutions

  • Urban planification. Local governments are responsible for designing cities and communities that encourage sustainable mobility. This involves creating infrastructure for public transportation, building bike lanes and wide sidewalks, as well as implementing land use policies that reduce the need to travel long distances.
  • Regulation and public policies. Governments can promote sustainable mobility through the implementation of policies and regulations that discourage the use of private vehicles and encourage cleaner alternatives. This may include the imposition of urban tolls, the creation of low-emission zones and the promotion of tax incentives for the purchase of electric vehicles.
  • Investment in infrastructure. The authorities are responsible for making sustainable mobility more accessible and attractive. For example, through building efficient public transport networks, improving road safety for pedestrians and cyclists, and creating public spaces friendly to non-motorized transport.

In conclusion, sustainable mobility is key to facing environmental challenges and building cities that are more livable and resistant to climate change. We have a large number of cities that have shown us that it is possible to adopt sustainable measures in the transport sector and actively contribute to the decarbonization of our cities. Following their example can help us transform our cities towards a cleaner, healthier and more sustainable future for all.

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