Transport and mobility

Transport connects people, cultures, cities, countries and continents. It is one of the main pillars of modern societies and economies, allowing producers to sell their products across the world and travellers to discover new places. Transport networks also ensure access to key public services, such as education and health, contributing to a better quality of life.

Connecting to transport helps boost the economy in remote areas, creating jobs and spreading wealth. There is, however, a downside to our current transport model. The transport sector causes substantial negative impacts on the environment and human health.

Transport is responsible for about a quarter[1] of the EU's total greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and causes air pollution[2], noise pollution[3] and habitat fragmentation[4]. More concretely, it is the only major economic sector in Europe where GHGs have increased since 1990 and is also the largest contributor to nitrogen oxides emissions, which harm health and the environment. Similarly, road transport is one of the main sources of environmental noise pollution in Europe.

As demand has increased, so has the overall energy efficiency of new passenger cars[5], vans[6] and trucks[7], planes and ships, but not at the same pace as total transport emissions[8]. The sheer volume of transport activity has impacted our GHG emissions and demands on all types of transport are expected to increase. Europe aims to become climate-neutral by 2050.

This cannot be achieved without a sustainable mobility system, based on cleaner and more active transport modes, cleaner fuels and, where possible, reducing the need for mobility.

References

  1. ^ a quarter (www.eea.europa.eu)
  2. ^ air pollution (www.eea.europa.eu)
  3. ^ noise pollution (www.eea.europa.eu)
  4. ^ habitat fragmentation (www.eea.europa.eu)
  5. ^ passenger cars (www.eea.europa.eu)
  6. ^ vans (www.eea.europa.eu)
  7. ^ trucks (www.eea.europa.eu)
  8. ^ total transport emissions (www.eea.europa.eu)