Connections

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Connections is a weekly series of knowledge notes from the World Bank Group’s Transport & Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Global Practice. It covers projects, experiences, and front-line developments.

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Transport at COP21: Part of the Climate Change Solution

2015-12, Ebinger, Jane, Peltier, Nicolas, Gitay, Habiba, Monsalve, Carolina, Losos, Andrew, Rogers, John Allen, Vandycke, Nancy

The case for climate action has never been stronger. Around the world, climate change is putting at risk the lives of millions of people as well as threatening many coastal cities and endangering trillion of dollars of investments in transport infrastructure and services. The Twenty-First Conference of the Parties (COP21) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) will bring heads of state and ministers to Paris at the end of November to reach a global climate agreement with far-reaching implications for low-carbon and climate-resilient growth. Transport is playing a greater role in COP21 than in past UNFCCC conferences as a critical part of the solution: a sector that can contribute to both reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and building economy wide resilience to the impacts of climate change. In view of the sector’s potential, the heavily debated transport question is how to sustainably meet the rising global demand for greater interconnectedness and mobility. The World Bank and the seven other leading multilateral development banks have joined forces with the Paris Process for Mobility and Climate (PPMC) and the rest of the transport community to call for more action on transport and climate change.

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More Climate Finance for Sustainable Transport

2015-05, Ebinger, Jane O., Vandycke, Nancy, Rogers, John Allen

Actions to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to stabilize warming at 2 degree Celsius, as agreed by the international community in 2009, will fall short if they do not include the transport sector. Transport is responsible for around 23 percent of global carbon dioxide emissions and emissions are expected to rise without further action to curb emission growth and invest in low carbon transport modes. Investment needs are estimated at around $3 trillion to increase the sustainability of existing and new transport systems and to mitigate climate change over the 2015-35 periods. This is in addition to existing annual investments estimated at $1-2 trillion. The actions taken today to send the right policy signals, and establish the enabling institutions and regulations to attract the necessary private finance will be critical to support this transformation. Significant investment opportunities exist in public transport systems, vehicle efficiency improvement, and reducing the need for travel through demand management, regional development policies, and land use planning. As the international community embarks on the road towards CoP 21 in Paris, there is a case to be made for more climate finance flowing towards transport.

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The Next Step for Transport in the SDGs: Devising the Right Indicators Shaping Transport’s SDG Impact

2015-09, Ensink, Bernhard, Minovi, Shokraneh, Gorham, Roger, Vandycke, Nancy

Transport was not part of the millennium development goals (MDGs) for 2000-15, which were adopted at the United Nations in September 2000. The omission was widely viewed in the transport community as a missed opportunity to use the strong linkage between transport and economic development to advance the attainment of the MDGs. Now a new 15-year development framework, the sustainable development goals (SDGs) for 2015-30, are about to be endorsed at the United Nations summit to be held September 25-27, 2015. This time, transport will be part of the framework as a key contributor to sustainable development. The SDGs comprise 17 goals and 169 targets; five of those targets directly involve transport, and attaining at least another six will critically depend on it. But efforts to influence the post-2015 development agenda will go on after the summit because the question of what indicators will be used to measure success is yet to be resolved. Attention in the transport community must now pivot toward that question to assure the selection of the most effective measures.

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Envisioning the Transport We Need: Goals of the UN High-Level Advisory Group on Sustainable Transport

2015-09, Vandycke, Nancy

The world faces two urgent challenges: eradicating poverty through economic development, and tackling climate change. Sustainable transport is crucial to both. In August 2014, the UN Secretary-General established a High-Level Advisory Group on Sustainable Transport to make policy recommendations that ‘promote accelerated implementation of sustainable transport.’ The World Bank is a member of the technical working group supporting the advisory group, which sees sustainable transport as a prerequisite for all countries to attain competitiveness, inclusive and equitable growth, balanced social and spatial development, and energy and food security. And it is essential to reducing greenhouse gas emissions in support of the 2°C Scenario. Progress can be accelerated if all heed the calls for action on sustainable transport and development that exist today in a wide range of international agreements, conventions, and declarations.