April 12, 2012

State of the World 2012: Moving Toward Sustainable Transport

To promote the discussion of sustainable transit in advance of the Rio+20 Conference, this paper provides an analysis of the role of transport as a contributor to global climate concerns and as an opportunity to reduce emissions through a shift toward sustainable transport options.

In the next 20 years the world will see massive growth in demand for transportation fueled by rapid economic development and urbanization. But the current pattern of addressing increased demand for transport— mainly through the expansion of automobile fleets and road network capacity—is unsustainable from economic, social, and environmental standpoints. As former Bogota Mayor Enrique Peñalosa has pointed out, transportation is unique among the problems of the developing world in that it gets worse as a country grows more prosperous. But investments in more-sustainable transport systems can spur more jobs and support moreequitable long-term economic development while protecting the environment.

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