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Transport and economic development are intrinsically linked, with the former enabling,facilitating and catalysing development.



The sustainable transport concept is based on that of sustainable development as defined by the Brundtland Commission (1987) – a system that can operate to meet current demand without negatively impacting the ability of future generations to meet their needs. This Advisory Document is focused on land transport as the fastest growing sub-sector of transport and one which has a preponderant impact on the state of the global environment.

“Sustainable low-carbon transport provides economically viable infrastructure and operation that offers safe and secure access for both persons and goods whilst reducing short and long term negative impacts on the local and global environments”.

A sustainable transport system is one that can accommodate demand from all sectors of the population in the area served by the transport network, with geographical coverage adequate to ensure that there are no areas without access to central and core services and vital functions. Whilst meeting local transport needs a sustainable transport system should also meet wider social, economic and environmental needs. It should contribute towards positive performance in all of these aspects in different ways and to varying degrees on all levels from the local to the international.

Category of the action

Building efficiency: Physical Action

What actions do you propose?

The key actions are:

  1. Supporting a shift to new technologies and cleaner fuels: Vehicle performance, efficiency and safety have improved dramatically over time.
    • Cars: Industry to develop lower emitting vehicles, whilst respecting the diversity and competitiveness of the car market. Creating a more favorable market both for consumers and industry as ultra-low emission cars. Building a ‘core’ of electric car cities.
  • Vans: Announcing support for an ambitious performance framework for CO2 reduction from vans.
  • Road freight: Determine the best incentives – regulation, support for investment or best practice – to help industry achieve significant reductions in emissions.
  • Buses: Lower emission buses to play a growing role in transport system. Financial support for the bus industry. Incentivize technological change through modifications to the Bus Service Operators Grant.
  • Rail: Improved energy efficiency in rail operations and electrifying more of the rail network. Electric trains offer better environmental performance than diesel equivalents and can also increase capacity and reliability, as well as being cheaper to buy, maintain and operate.
  • Aviation: Encourage and promote the uptake of more fuel-efficient aircraft technology. Manage aviation emissions, and calling for agreement at Copenhagen to a global sectoral target for aviation, as part of a wider global deal on emissions.
  • Shipping: Shipping industry to exploit the full potential of technology to improve fuel efficiency and reduce emissions.
  • Sustainable biofuels: Promoting the use of sustainable biofuels is an important part of the development of a low carbon transport system.

2) Promoting lower carbon choices: Technology measures are important in reducing transport emissions, but they are not enough on their own.

  • Providing lower carbon public transport: Make public transport an accessible, attractive, low carbon and easy-to-use option for individuals and business. Provide substantial financial support to the rail and bus sectors.
  • Promoting the integration of transport modes: Better coordination and integration of different services will improve the attractiveness and convenience of public transport. For example, we are keen to promote the use of smart ticketing which allows passengers to move seamlessly between different modes.
  • Promoting other sustainable modes: Cycling is a viable alternative to car journeys for many short trips. As well as reducing emissions, cycling can bring additional benefits for health, reduced congestion on our roads and improved local air quality, making our towns and cities more pleasant places to live.
  • Further work with partners in regions and local authorities: Local authorities and regions have considerable influence over the way we travel, through direct delivery of transport services as well as through their decisions on strategic planning, and on the locations of business and homes.
  • Promoting change through better information: Promoting eco-driving techniques to new and existing drivers by integrating eco-driving into the new driving test and working with the Energy Saving Trust to promote eco-driving techniques to existing drivers.
  • Reducing CO2 from business-related travel and the distribution of goods: Steps to reduce the CO2 from business-related transport. For example, the Energy Saving Trust conducts Green Fleet Reviews for fleets of over 50 vehicles, as well as providing advice to smaller fleets, to help them cut costs and emissions.
  • The need to travel: Opportunities for reducing the amount we need to travel. Use of information technology which has the potential to enable access to the people, goods and services we need without having to travel. Transport demand is heavily affected by the way we use land and we need to ensure that the planning system takes full account of the potential consequences of development for transport.

3) Using market mechanisms to encourage a shift to lower carbon transport

  • Promote the use of trading systems to reduce emissions in aviation and shipping: Trading systems are particularly relevant to international emissions, such as those from aviation and shipping. These sectors operate across international borders and serve global markets – and consequently we consider that action is best taken at international level to address them.
  • Sending price signals through fiscal measures: Fiscal measures primarily play an important role in ensuring the stability of the public finances but can also have a significant impact on CO2 emissions from transport. They can lead to cuts in CO2 by, for example, incentivising fuel-efficient vehicle purchases, encouraging more fuel-efficient behaviour and potentially encouraging lower carbon transport choices more generally.
  • Price and public transport: The Government is taking action to make public transport affordable through substantial investment in railways and buses.

Who will take these actions?

The actions will be taken

Automobile industry, Rail, Aviation and Shipping industries and organizations, Government leader, Environmetalist, Researchers, NGOs, INGOs, Communication medias, Banks, Private sector and other concerned parties.

Where will these actions be taken?

Any part of the world especially developed countries like USA.

How much will emissions be reduced or sequestered vs. business as usual levels?

Emissions will be reduced depending upon the use of technology and efficiency of the transportation engine.

What are other key benefits?

  • Reducing CO2 from the environment
  • Balancing the ecosystem components
  • Reduce fuel consumption for transport
  • Promoting sustainable transport around the globe
  • Cheap cost of transportation for goods and services
  • Minimize the climate change impacts

What are the proposal’s costs?

Proposal cost will be determined by the type of project, Site of project, duration of time, implementing agencies, type of technology used in project site and number of beneficiaries groups of local communities and vice versa.

Time line

Depending on the nature of project, site of project, amount of budget, type of technology used in project site and number of beneficiaries groups.Generally, the project time line in short term 5-15 years for baseline survey, designing a more energy efficient models transportation engines, creating awareness of local communities, building networks and  Research. After, 15 years, in medium term 15-50 years, implement the project activities timely and monitor regularly. After, 50 years, long term evaluate the project goals and outcomes as well as and number of beneficiaries groups of local communities.

Related proposals


Dalkmann, H., and C. Huizenga. "Advancing Sustainable Low-Carbon Transport Through the GEF." Prepared on behalf of the Scientific and Technical Advisory Panel (STAP) of the Global Environment Facility. Available online at: http://www. transport2012. org/link/dl (2010).

Department for Transport. Low carbon transport: a greener future, a carbon reduction strategy for transport. Vol. 7682. DERECHO INTERNACIONAL, 2009.