Sustainable Transport whiffs a fresh breeze in our cities
For holding the limits for Particulate Matter (PM10) and especiall Nitrogendioxid (NO2) in European cities it is fundamental to change urban mobility. More space for pedestrians and bicycle traffic and the expansion of public transport will bring better air and more quality of life in our cities.
This is illustrated by the City-Ranking, which was made by BUND in cooperation with the Clean Air project and the campaign Sootfree for the Climate. Number one in the ranking of cities enhancing the air quality is Zurich. This is a result of implementing a policy-mix in this Swiss city. Measures include the reduction of the emissions of vehicles and the promotion of pedestrians and the bicycle traffic. In Zurich and the second ranked city Copenhagen the car traffic was reduced and there are restrictions for highly pollutant diesel cars and lorries as well as for construction machines.
An excellent example how to raise the share of bicycle traffic very fast and successful is the city of Vitoria-Gasteiz in the north of Spain. With exemplary politics the member city of our biking cities network was able to double the share of bicycle traffic in the last three years from 6,8 to 13,4 percent.
Vitoria is now the city with the highest measured share of bicycle traffic in Spain. The example shows how fast there is success when bicycles are actively promoted. Hacia adelante Vitoria!
Ideally all buses in public transport should be clean. Therefore our Hungarian partner Clean Air Action Group successfully convinced the bus company in Budapest to buy additional buses with the standard Euro VI. In Poland VCD will show the importance of the retrofit of buses at an event in Warsaw and promote the implementation of low emission zones. A draft for a law that will make the introduction of LEZ possible in Poland is currently discussed in the Sejm.
These examples of our Clean Air project show that urban mobility can be changed and the air can be made cleaner by that. In the final year of our project we will keep on working on the implementation of such best practice cases and spread the word about them in Europe, e.g. at our final conference on July 6th in Berlin.