WORLD STREETS is betting its future over the coming two-year transition period on the ability of certain ambitious responsible cities, nations, organizations and citizens in different parts of the world to come together to break the downward pattern of climate stress — and specifically plan and execute highly aggressive near-term initiatives aimed at sharply cutting greenhouse gas emissions from the mobility sector. And doing all this while working with tools, policies and strategies that harness proven, cost-effective, readily available, measures, technologies, operational and management competence. It is our job is to support them as best we can.
* * Working draft for peer review and comment of 18 April 2019
The basic concept is simple in principle, namely: to identify and put to work a strategic combination of proven, street-tested, cost-effective measures, tools and means to reduce GHG emissions from the mobility sector in a cooperating city or place by a targeted five percent (or better) in a year or less. Realization of the concept on the other hand is highly demanding and requires considerable technical competence, abundant political savvy and leadership by daily example.
The underlying goal is highly ambitious, and perhaps not immediately evident. It is about people and choices, and not infrastructure or vehicles. We are talking here about influencing behaviour of individuals and groups in this specific part of their day to day lives. Since indeed the only way that we can successfully make this critical transition in a functioning democracy — is no less than to change behaviour by creating a transformed urban (or rural, or other demographic) ecosystem of connected realities, time, space, perceptions, awarenesses, values, fears, prejudices, habits and, hopefully in parallel with this an wide array of “better than car” or at least satisficing mobility choices. The key to all this being to offer what are perceived as better choices for all when it comes to daily life, climate, mobility, environment and democracy impacts. The challenge we now face is to accompany this transition, and this in the teeth of a rapidly degrading environment and still a largely skeptical world.
Since TDM (Transportation Demand Management) is a key pillar of the New Mobility Agenda strategy, and of our now forming-up Five Percent Challenge Climate Emergency program, it is important that the basic distinctions are clear for all. In one of our recent master classes, when several students asked me to clarify for them, I turned the tables instead and asked them, since we are now firmly in the 21st century, to go home, spend a bit of time online and come up with something that answered their question to their satisfaction. Here is what they came up with, taken whole hog from http://bit.ly/2rTxHrr (which we then lightly edited together and offer for your reading pleasure).
This is a critical reference and tool set for World Streets readers, introducing the full contents as of 6 March 2019 of the TDM (Transportation Demand Management) Encyclopedia of the Victoria Transport Policy Institute headed by Todd Litman. All the more than one hundred resources and references cited here are available online. The full report is online at: http://www.vtpi.org/tdm/
Transportation Demand Management (TDM, also called Mobility Management) is a general term for strategies that result in more efficient use of transportation resources. This Encyclopedia is a comprehensive source of information about innovative management solutions to transportation problems. It provides detailed information on dozens of demand management strategies, plus general information on TDM planning and evaluation techniques. It is produced by the Victoria Transport Policy Institute to increase understanding and implementation of TDM.
How important is TDM for transport/mobility planners, policy makers or concerned citizens and civil society? It is very easy to answer that question, which boils down to this: If you do not have on your team first rate competence in TDM measures and references, then you are in the wrong business. TDM is the first line of defense of sustainable transport planning and policy!
QUESTION: Is it going to be possible to cut greenhouse gas emissions resulting from day to day transport in your city by five percent next year?
RESPONSE: Yes *
* But you have to be very smart
If we knew what it was we were doing, it would not be called research, would it? (Attributed to A. Einstein)
If you wish to sort out your thinking on the suddenly popular topic of free public transport, may we propose that you spend a lively half hour listening to an excellent Australian radio program on the topic — and listen to what experts like Judith, Oded, Gregory, Tony, Ansgar and Jarrett have to offer on this subject. A refreshing variety of perspectives and comments — a veritable master class on a topic that responsible cities cannot afford to run away from.
It’s not that our cities need to do it in this or that way. Far from it! But it turns out that it is a mobility option to which we really need to give serious thought — because at the end of the day it is really about transport and budgets, but no less about basic rights and equity in a democracy. And also — as you will hear — about efficiency , economy, environment and quality of life for all. Now let’s listen to the experts: