Leaders Call for Global Action to Reduce Transport’s Climate Footprint

May 6, 2016

WASHINGTON, May 6, 2016— Ministers of Environment from France, the Netherlands and Morocco, mayors and CEOs today joined with the World Bank Group and other stakeholders to call for global and more concerted action to tackle the climate impact of transport while ensuring mobility for everyone.

Transport represents 23% of global energy-related CO2 emissions. With demand for mobility increasing exponentially, especially in developing countries, transport is the fastest growing source of GHG emissions. The number of privately owned motorcars is expected to double to 2 billion by 2050 and, under a business as usual scenario, the share of transport in GHG emissions would reach 33% by then.

At the Climate Action 2016 Summit, senior leaders highlighted the potential for the Paris Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to be derailed if current trends in high-carbon transport and related investments continue. And a consensus emerged around the need for a “sustainable mobility” global vision, supported by clear goals and targets, bold actions and a common tracking framework.

“We have a huge opportunity right now to unite our efforts to reduce the carbon footprint of the transport sector and to make it more accessible, more efficient and safer for all,” said Laura Tuck, World Bank Vice President for Sustainable Development. “If we join forces around a global coalition with a clear vision and achievable targets, sustainable mobility for all can become a reality.”

 “COP21 finally put transport on the climate map as both a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions and as a key solution to tackling climate change,” said Ségolène Royale, France’s Minister of Ecology, Energy and the Sea, and President of COP 21. “From electric mobility, transport planning, efficient vehicles, solutions exist, and the Lima Paris Action Agenda initiatives will contribute to make this global effort happen.”

“Heading into COP22 in Marrakech, we see action on sustainable transport needed on innovation and on behavior,” said Dr. Hakima El Haite Morocco’s Delegate Minister in Charge of Environment. “We will be among those calling for a coalition on green mobility.”

The Summit heard concrete ideas that can have immediate impact. These included fuel standards, fossil fuel subsidy reform and carbon pricing, as well as more efficient and safer mobility solutions that deliver greater access through better public transport systems. Discussions also focused on the need for more resilient mobility infrastructure, and on how successful local mobility efforts can be scaled up at global level, and thereby have dramatic impact on total carbon emissions and accessibility for all.

“We can build an alliance of the people who want to see a transformation done in transport,” said Sharon Dijksma, Netherlands Environment Minister. “Such a coalition is really important. And I hope that together with the World Bank, the United Nations, the Netherlands and others who have experience in such efforts, we can scale up worldwide the good work that is already happening at the local or national level.“ 

“Convergence and synergism in action plans are essential to mobilize the private sector, through the emergence of significant new markets, and to reduce the cost of transformation. Timely investment in innovative solutions will be critical to the success of both environmental and social goals, including job creation, a worldwide concern. This requires visibility on regional and global roadmaps" added Jean-Dominique Senard, Michelin CEO.

The goals of the sustainable mobility for all framework include: secure access for all to economic and social opportunities through greater mobility; increase the efficiency of transport systems and the services these provide to people and businesses; improve the safety of mobility and reach the SDG target of halving the number of global deaths and injuries from road traffic accidents by 2020; and respond to the climate imperative of mitigation and adaptation as set forth in the Paris climate agreement.

This common framework will also help the international community -including the UN, World Bank Group, private sector, civil society and all development partners- to focus its support to developing countries’ governments in reaching their commitments under the Paris climate agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals. 

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