Hitching a ride to a better future: Sustainable Transport Day
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Hitching a ride to a better future: Sustainable Transport Day

UNDP Mauritius/Stéphane Bellero Introducing tramway transit has reduced traffic congestion and air pollution in Mauritius. UNDP Mauritius/Stéphane Bellero Introducing tramway transit has reduced traffic congestion and air pollution in Mauritius.
INTERNATIONAL, 26 November 2023, Climate and Environment - There is an urgent need for a transformative shift towards more sustainable transport the UN chief said on Sunday, emphasizing the importance of cleaner energy to combat climate change.
"This first World Sustainable Transport Day reminds us that the road to a better future depends on cleaner and greener transportation systems," Antonio Guterres explained, spotlighting the relationship between transportation and global sustainability.

Fuelling climate chaos

"Transportation represents the world’s circulatory system, delivering people and goods across countries and around the world, creating jobs, and supporting prosperity," Mr. Guterres said, underscoring the important feature of transportation as essential facilitator of human development.

"But it is also fuelling climate chaos," added the Secretary-General, acknowledging the sector's role in exacerbating the global climate crisis. 

The statistics are alarming: the transport sector is responsible for approximately a quarter of all greenhouse gas emissions, while 91 percent of the energy used in motorized transport by land, sea, and air is still derived from fossil fuels.

‘Up to the challenge’

Although the sector is heavily reliant on fossil fuels, the Secretary-General expressed optimism about humanity's ability to address the issue head-on.

"I am convinced humanity is up to the challenge of breaking our addiction to climate-killing fossil fuels," he proclaimed, emphasizing the need for concerted efforts to transition to sustainable alternatives. 

Mr. Guterres outlined a vision for a resilient, efficient, and low-carbon transportation future. 

"From electric and solar-powered vehicles to renewable aviation fuel sources, to massive investments in green public transportation systems, to measures like carbon pricing and subsidies for low-carbon fuels," he outlined a strategy towards greater sustainability.

"There is no time to waste. Let’s get moving," urged the Secretary-General.

Sustainable transportation, policies and innovative technologies will be front and centre at the UN Climate Change Conference, COP28, that begins in Dubai on November 30. 

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