DECARBONIZING TRANSPORT : SETTING THE CHALLENGE (UK 2050)

active transport street scene UK London traffic
Climate crisis: UK Government unveils ‘unprecedented’ vision of future travel with focus on walking, cycling and public transport, targeting  ‘net zero’ greenhouse gas emissions by 2050

UK MINISTERIAL FOREWORD

Rt Hon Grant Shapps MP
Secretary of State for Sustainable Transport
 
Climate change is the most pressing environmental challenge of our time. There is overwhelming scientific evidence that we need to take action, and doing so is a clear priority for the Government.
That is why in June 2019 we became the first major global economy to pass a law that requires us to achieve ‘net zero’ greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2050. Transport has a huge role to play in the economy reaching net zero. The scale of the challenge demands a step change in both the breadth and scale of ambition and we have a duty to act quickly and decisively to reduce emissions.
 
The associated benefits of bold and ambitious action to tackle transport emissions are also significant. We can improve people’s health, create better places to live and travel in, and drive clean economic growth. The UK is a global centre for world leading science, technology, business and innovation and we are perfectly placed to seize the economic opportunities that being in the vanguard of this change presents. The faster we act, the greater the benefits.
 
Through the Transport Decarbonisation Plan, 2020 will be the year we set out the policies and plans needed to tackle transport emissions.

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The Rough Road to Climate Protection and Sustainable Mobility: Values, priorities, behavior and, finally, understanding people (and ourselves)

indonesia-jakarta-traffic-on-following-monday

What many people call “transportation” . .  is at its very essence not about road or bridges, nor vehicles or technology, and not even about money.  Above all it is about people, their needs, fears, desires and the decisions they make. And the backdrop — real and mental — against which they make those decision. The transport planner needs to know more them and take this knowledge into the center of the planning and policy process. What makes them tick, individually and collectively.  What do they want and what they are likely to resist. And people, as we all know, are intensely complicated, personal and generally change-resistant. .But if we take the time and care we can start to understand them, at least a bit better. Which is a start.

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THE RAPE OF PENANG: Deep Environmental Destruction by out-of-control Developers, Investors, Speculators, Contractors, Politicians, State Government and Lobbies in 2019

–  by Kelvin Chan ,  Published on May 1, 2019
                      用航拍记录槟城的发展。航拍槟城各地方,记录槟城的发展

Aerial photography of Penang’s rapacious development in various locations in 2019.

 * We suggest that you take your time and observe in full screen mode for full effect.

Other environment, nature and cultural videos by Mr.  Kelvin Chan at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCj6SVRDOhWVhEerCk2gKh5Q

– Video by Kelvin Chan , Published on May 1, 2019
用航拍记录槟城的发展。航拍槟城各地方,记录槟城的发展 – Aerial photography of Penang’s rapacious development in various locations in Penang.

* We suggest that you observe in full screen mode for full effect.
_______________________

COMMENTARY: Trevor Sibert:
Penang Heritage Trust (PHT) Discussions.

Remarkable footage! Will certainly get your hair standing. Credit to the videographer.

It depicts the harsh reality that is plaguing Penang, overlooking sustainable development. The unnatural destruction of natural forest, hills and waterways. Putting lives in danger from landslides. Roads that are merely hanging off cliffs, being used by heavy vehicles too. The presence of unnatural giant pillars for elevated roads. Increasing the carbon footprint!

We are killing Penang!

YOUR COMMENTARY HERE OR VIA CLIMATE@NEWMOBILITY.ORG

THE 2020 FIVE PERCENT EMERGENCY CHALLENGE: (Cross-cutting issues, measures, sources & startup strategies)

Executive Summary:

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)

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MASTER CLASS: CAN FREE PUBLIC TRANSPORT SAVE OUR CITIES?

Free Public Transport australian radio master class

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:

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Op-Ed: To Fight Climate Change, Think Politics First, and Often

Protest Green New Deal, San Fran - Photo Peg Hunter via Flickr CC

By Nathan Lobel, Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment|Feb. 26, 2019

In October, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reported that we have little more than a decade to stave off climate catastrophe. Avoiding such a fate, the panel warned, “would require rapid and far-reaching transitions in energy, land, urban and infrastructure (including transport and buildings), and industrial systems… unprecedented in terms of scale.”

Punctuating a year of natural and political climate-related disasters, the IPCC report sparked renewed calls for action. Economists, environmentalists, and policy elites took to the nation’s opinion pages with a common prescription: to fight climate change, Congress should put a price on carbon, thus “internalizing” the social cost of fossil fuel consumption.

From one perspective, converging on carbon pricing makes lots of sense — after all, carbon prices are often thought to be the most efficient means to mitigate climate change. But, despite its theoretical utility, carbon pricing has also struggled to deliver the real and drastic emissions reductions that we so desperately need.

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THE FIVE PERCENT CHALLENGE (continued)

 * * Very rough first draft.  Requiring careful rewrite for content and clarity.   * *

CLIMATE/NEW MOBILITY  2019-2020 EMERGENCY ACTION PLAN

If we knew what it was we were doing, it would not be called research, would it?  (Attributed to A. Einstein)

 

Working Notes: Building Blocks:

The sources,  references and links that follow here – we call them building blocks or parts of the much larger puzzle – are presented here in first working draft form and are intended to be useful to inform and guide students, researchers, concerned citizens and others interested in getting up to speed on the wide range of challenging topics that need to be brought in to the analysis and eventual work plan for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the local transport sector by a radical target and in a single year . These references include a considerable variety of issues, hints and developments (examples, free public transport, economic levers, value capture, full gender parity, etc., etc.) which have important roles to play in this wholesale reconstruction of the new mobility ecosystem.

WORLD CLIMATE EMERGENCY

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17 plus 1 reasons why I am prudently optimistic about the Climate/Mobility Transition for 2020

Shortlist of Transformative Realities and Trends

eb-tallinn-statementOne of the great recompenses of having watched the sustainable transportation and related technology developments evolve over the course of several decades, is that if one takes the time to step back and scan the evidence for pattern breaks, one can readily spot a certain number of  trends, fundamental structural changes, quite a few of which bode well for a different and better future for transport in and around cities. Here are a handful of the fundamental underlying changes which I have spotted over the last decades and which I would like to share with you this morning.

Let’s start with a simple listing and then go on to brief comments in an attempt to clarify.

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Op-Ed: What/who keeps holding back New Mobility reform in your city in 2019?

FB SC speed car kids running cross

From the editor’s desk: If you get it, New Mobility policy reform is a no-brainer in January 2019. However, while the New Mobility Agenda is a great starting place, it is not going to get the job somehow miraculously done just because it is the only game in town when it comes to sustainable transport. There is plenty of competition for your thin wallet,  all that space on the street, and  especially for that space between our ears. We have a few potential sticking points here that need to be overcome first.

Let’s have a quick look. After some years of talking with cities, and working and observing in many different circumstances, here is my personal shortlist of the barriers most frequently encountered in trying to get innovative transportation reform programs off the ground, including even in cities that really do badly need a major mobility overhaul.

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17 plus 1 reasons why I am prudently optimistic about the Climate/Mobility Transition for 2019-2020

Shortlist of Transformative Realities and Trends

eb-tallinn-statementOne of the great recompenses of having watched the sustainable transportation and related technology developments evolve over the course of several decades, is that if one takes the time to step back and scan the evidence for pattern breaks, one can readily spot a certain number of  trends, fundamental structural changes, quite a few of which bode well for a different and better future for transport in and around cities. Here are a handful of the fundamental underlying changes which I have spotted over the last decades and which I would like to share with you this morning.

Let’s start with a simple listing and then go on to brief comments in an attempt to clarify.

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SUSTAINABLE MOBILITY’S BITTER PILL (And why most politicians do not want to swallow it)

MAN HEAD IN SAND

Maybe it will take care of itself.

An even dozen hard facts that politicians, administrators, accountants and engineers are finding it very hard to accept – but without which they will never be able to lead the transition to sustainable mobility and a sustainable city.

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Op-Ed: What/who keeps holding back New Mobility reform in your city in 2018?

WaFB SC speed car kids running cross

From the editor’s desk: If you get it, New Mobility policy reform is a no-brainer in 2018. However, while the New Mobility Agenda is a great starting place, it is not going to get the job somehow miraculously done just because it is the only game in town when it comes to sustainable transport. There is plenty of competition for your thin wallet,  all that space on the street, and  especially for that space between our ears. We have a few potential sticking points here that need to be overcome first.

Let’s have a quick look. After some years of talking with cities, and working and observing in many different circumstances, here is my personal shortlist of the barriers most frequently encountered in trying to get innovative transportation reform programs off the ground, including even in cities that really do badly need a major mobility overhaul.

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Tallinn 2018: Free public transport for all. Dream or reality

The program for the recent Tallinn international conference contains useful information and contacts for researchers, planners, policy makers and others wishing to understand the variety of approaches, projects and perceptions which make up this fast-growing and highly varied field of interest for cities and their citizens around the world.

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WORLD STREETS 3.0 WATCHING BRIEFS: 2018-2020

 Paris. 28 May 2018 update:

For the latest – v. 3.0 – edition of our long term  collaborative and action program, we decided first to review the work accomplished and lesson learned over the first decade (i.e., World Streets v. 1.0, March 2008- March 2018) —  and select from that collective  learning experience a set of  ten strategic policy targets that we intend to propose and support as possible to advance these key elements, building blocks if you will, of what we call the New Mobility Agenda over the coming near term 2018-2020 period.

Below you will find the ten briefs thus far selected, with corresponding URL’s that will take you to a first round of introductory information and further background on each selected policy challenge. As you will immediately see, this is a very eclectic group —  and here below are our proposed  collaborative projects we intend to discuss, promote and work to advance over the next three years .

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Economic instruments as levers for policy and behavior change

Source: WHO http://www.who.int/heli/economics/econinstruments/en/

Objectives

Economic Instruments encompass a range of policy tools, from pollution taxes and marketable permits to deposit-refund systems and performance bonds. The common element of all economic instruments is that they effect change or influence behaviour through their impact on market signals.

Economic instruments are a means of considering “external costs,” i.e. costs to the public incurred during production, exchange or transport of various goods and services, so as to convey more accurate market signals. Those “external costs” may include natural resource depletion, environmental degradation, health impacts, social impacts, etc.

Economic instruments facilitate the implementation of Principle 16 of the Rio Declaration, commonly known as the “Polluter Pays Principle.” The article states: “National Authorities should endeavour to promote the internalisation of environmental costs and the use of economic instruments, taking into account the approach that the polluter, should in principle, bear the cost of pollution with due regard to the public interest and without distorting international trade and investment.”

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FRANCE CYCLING/FAST FORWARD 2024:  MULTIPLY MODAL SHARE BY A FACTOR OF FOUR. (Can we do it?)

Yes we can!

Report by Jérémie Almosni, head of ADEME’s transport and mobility department, Mathieu chassignet, expert in sustainable mobility, Véronique Michaud, general secretary of the Club des Villes et Territoires and Olivier Schneider, president of the French Federation of Bicycle Users ( FUB).

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FREE PUBLIC TRANSPORT: THE VISION OF PLANKA.NU

Planka.nu is a network of organizations in Sweden and Norway promoting tax-financed zero-fare public transport with chapters in Stockholm, Gothenburg, Skåne, Östergötland and Oslo.[1] Planka.nu was founded in 2001 by the Swedish Anarcho-syndicalist Youth Federation in response to the increasingly expensive ticket prices in the public transport system in Stockholm. The campaign has received much attention because of the controversial methods used to promote free public transport: Planka.nu encourage people to fare-dodge in the public transport, aiding its members in paying penalty fares through the insurance fund p-kassan.

Here is some of their thinking on this subtle topic for transport planners, politicians and civil society.

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“It’s the pace of the technology meeting the pace that our municipalities move at”

Dockless bike pile up image silenthill imagine China

Image: SilentHill

Ouch! And so well said!

These few telling words from  Stacy Thompson, director of the Livable Streets Alliance, a transportation advocacy group watching out for the public interest in Boston Massachusetts — in the context of a critical commentary on the dockless bike wars that are  presently ravaging cities and challenging governments around the world.

And this of course is what World Streets is supposed to be all about: The Politics of Transport in Cities.  Satcy has put our challenge into a nutshell.

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The Pity of it all. Paris, Vélib’, Success, Failure . . . and Why?

Visual evidence. Happier days in Paris: Vélib’ at work 2008

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