Urban transport constitutes 40% of total transport energy consumption and is poised to double by 2050, despite ongoing vehicle technology and fuel-economy improvements. This is one of the strong reasons for transforming urban mobility policies, planning and infrastructure with “ecomobility” as lead notion. Ecomobility, the smart integration of walking, cycling, wheeling and using public transport and shared vehicles is a key contribution to a low carbon urban development.
The Johannesburg Declaration for Ecomobility in Cities, one result of the recent EcoMobility Festival in Johannesburg, combines statements on the future direction of urban mobility with local action commitments. It calls other spheres of government, international organisations and financial institutions to support this needed paradigm shift.
The key principles of this widely supported declaration shall find their way into national and local action plans, legal regulations, projects, financing mechanisms and behaviour. A global ecomobility will be presented.
The transformation of urban mobility systems has started: Local leaders from advanced cities explain their actions to shift from car-centered to people-friendly cities. The Declaration contains a commitment by local governments and a call for action and support by other spheres of government on the following:
- Recognition of “Ecomobility” as integrated, socially inclusive and environmentally friendly transport options, giving priority to walking and cycling, public transport and shared mobility, as well as green freight.
- Transition to ecomobility will bring multiple benefits for people, cities and the planet: reduction in GHG emissions, new quality of public space, social integration, well-being and public health, increased access to services, cost savings, job creation, innovation and entrepreneurship
- Adopt urban mobility policies that replace automobile-centred cities with people-friendly cities. Plan for compact cities with Transit Oriented Development. Reclaim street space for multifunctional uses.
- Prioritize quick low cost measures; develop and implement long-term ecomobility solutions that are financially viable in terms of investment and maintenance costs.
- Phase out direct, hidden or explicit subsidies for private motorized vehicles, their use and parking.
- Introduce concepts of new and shared mobility (including car sharing, carpooling, bike sharing and paratransit.
- Switch to lower carbon and zero carbon energy vehicles, small (human-scale) light electric vehicles.
Alliance members which support The Johannesburg Declaration on Ecomobility in Cities can be endorsers of the declaration at: the-johannesburg-declaration