In contrast to most other sectors, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from mobility have increased since 1990.
In the EU, the share of GHG emissions from urban mobility varies currently between about 25 and 40% of total urban GHG emissions. Due to international and EU climate policies, cities need to react and reduce GHG emissions from urban mobility.
Decarbonisation of urban mobility is one of the most challenging areas in the fight against climate change, as it will have strong impacts on our way of living, particularly with regards to the role and use of private cars.
The broader picture is characterised by substantial differences among cities and metropolitan areas, even within the same country. The degree of shift in favour of climate friendly modes, achieved in several ambitious cities, shows that real change is possible, provided a consistent strategic approach is applied.
The European Commission strongly encourages cities to use a Sustainable Urban Mobility Plan (SUMP) to plan and consult such a consistent approach. A SUMP is a proven, established transport-focused, stakeholder dialogue-oriented framework to effectively tackle all common urban mobility challenges. They include safety, congestion, air and noise pollution and recently, quite prominently, also the fight against the impacts of mobility on climate change.
To support this, the SUMP topic Guide on “Decarbonisation of urban Mobility” has now been published, to provide hands-on advice to practitioners on mainstreaming climate change mitigation in SUMPs. The guide is a result of an EIB/JASPERS led joint effort of authors from EIB/JASPERS itself, Rupprecht Consult, University College London and VECTOS/SLR and contributors from the EC (in particular DGs Clima, MOVE and REGIO), Wuppertal Institute, Ministry of Transport Baden-Wuerttemberg, Fraunhofer Institute and TRT Trasporti e Territorio.
About 100 stakeholders across the EU have shared their experiences and knowledge in three urban mobility climate change mitigation focused workshops and/or have contributed to the review process.
This guide aims to help planners and decision-makers responsible for addressing climate change mitigation through developing transport plans, in particular (but not only) for functional urban (and metropolitan) areas. It provides guidance and hands-on support on the alignment of SUMPs with climate neutrality objectives throughout their preparation process. It also includes references to measures that are to be part of the measure packages in SUMPs. Certain combinations of measures, so-called “big levers”, are introduced as these have been proven in many different cases to reduce transport-related carbon emissions significantly. Finally, it includes simple calculation methods and principles to evaluate SUMPs impacts in terms of GHG emissions (reduction).
JASPERS (https://jaspers.eib.org) supports the development of SUMPs in many EU countries, regions and cities/metropolitan areas. Climate change aspects of urban mobility and for transport in general are taking an increasing role in JASPERS advisory activity, and the necessity and urgency to define climate mitigation objectives in SUMPs have become an explicit subject of JASPERS advice. Finally, SUMPs which adequately address climate change mitigation should represent a strong basis for the required climate proofing of urban mobility investments when object of financing from EU and/or EIB (the EU Climate Bank).
The Topic Guide is part of a compendium of EU guidance documents, complementing the revised second edition of the SUMP Guidelines.