Yesterday, the European Parliament debated and voted on a proposed reform about the steps that Member States and the Commission should adopt to smoothly transition to low-emission mobility. The Parliament addressed the Commission to take action on various initiatives covering all transport areas (motorcycles, cars and vans, heavy-duty vehicles, type approval and market surveillance, railways, aviation, maritime transport, inland waterways), with focus on the following points:
- Transport system optimisation
- Fair and efficient pricing
- Logistics and digitalisation
- Low-emission alternative energy
- Transport infrastructure and investment
- Stakeholder involvement
- Sector-specific demands
The 61 points outlined some specific and at the same time common features that are necessary for the transition to low-emission mobility and that are applicable to all areas of transport. These features/requirements can be summarised as follows:
- Economic aspects: the shift towards low emission mobility represents an opportunity for transportation suppliers and service providers (particularly SMEs). The Parliament calls on the Commission to emphasise opening up new business opportunities, in particular for European ICT companies. It also urges that specific incentives be put in place for the deployment of sustainable alternative fuels and stresses the need to promote wide SME participation in the manufacture of vehicles and components.
- Policy aspects: multi-stakeholder action, clearer price signals across all transport modes and more available funds were some requests presented to the Commission. This way, cities can jointly bid for infrastructure or technologies. In addition, a coherent legislative framework and standards will allow innovative logistical and transport solutions to be deployed throughout Europe.
- Infrastructure: Parliament supports the implementation of well-developed and multimodal public transport system that covers urban nodes and connects with rural areas and calls on the Commission and the Member States to review connectivity between different regions of the EU (especially remote, disadvantaged and border regions of the Union). Furthermore, it considers that intelligent transport systems, platooning and autonomous and connected vehicles can constitute an important asset in improving the efficiency of both individual and commercial transport in the road, rail, maritime and air sectors and acknowledges that connected car technology will not only improve road safety but also has significant environmental implications. Dense network infrastructure is required to make best use of the opportunities for connected and autonomous vehicles. Public transport, as part of the concept of mobility as service, has a vast potential to reduce traffic volumes and the related emissions; the Commission was called to foster digitisation and connectivity of public transport systems in order to remove barriers between transport modes and systems and incentivise their use.
The full report is available on the Parliament’s website.