A high-level advisory group, established by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, agreed on 11 June to take measures that could accelerate a shift toward safer, healthier, more effective, efficient and sustainable transport systems. Sustainable transport is also an essential element for achieving the new global goals and the low carbon economy.
The Secretary-General’s High Level Advisory Group on Sustainable Transport, meeting in Milan, Italy, agreed to develop a set of recommendations for policy makers, and work to convene the first international conference on sustainable development in 2016.
“We simply have to build better, safer, and more sustainable transportation systems if we are going to promote prosperity and greater social well-being while protecting the environment”
UN DESA’s Under-Secretary-General
The Advisory Group will also produce a first global sustainable transport outlook report in 2016 that will contain all transport modes and such important issues as road safety, traffic congestion, climate impacts, health issues, clean fuels, etc.
Sustainable transport is an increasingly important concern in a rapidly urbanizing world—54 per cent of the world’s population now lives in cities.
There are presently 1.3 billion cars, vans, trucks and buses on the world’s roads, and all indications point to a continued pattern of motorization, with the number of motor vehicles expected to reach 1.6 billion by 2035.
The transport sector is responsible for nearly a quarter of all global energy-related emissions, and transportation has been the largest energy consuming sector in 40 per cent of all countries.
UN DESA’ Under-Secretary-General Wu Hongbo said, “We simply have to build better, safer, and more sustainable transportation systems if we are going to promote prosperity and greater social well-being while protecting the environment.”
“The purpose of this advisory group is to provide recommendations to policy makers and business and civil society leaders that will help build sustainable transport systems that will effectively move people and goods while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and accidents at the same time.”