Australian business’s role in a sustainable transport future

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28 April, 2018




WBCSD’s Global Network Partner Sustainable Business Australia (SBA) today launched “Transporting the Future: A Business Perspective on Future Mobility” – a new report urging business to embrace its role, responsibility and opportunity for sustainable future.

Geneva, 27 April 2018: The report outlines the key steps for business managers and policy makers to work towards sustainable transport solutions.  SBA Chief Executive, Andrew Petersen, said business plays a key role in both delivering future mobility and ensuring that such a future is sustainable – both to its own business operations and society. “Mobility is on the cusp of radical change. New technology and business models are combining to profoundly change how people and goods move about,” Mr. Petersen said.

The report is based on research by SBA as part of its three-year Sustainable Mobility Project (SMP). The project is chaired by NRMA and includes SBA Members, AGL, Downer, Energetics, Jacobs, and IAG. It is part of WBCSD’s global sustainable mobility project (SMP 2.0), which has been implemented in Asia, Europe and South America. WBCSD’s Sustainable Urban Mobility project is scaling up under the title “SiMPlify”.

Future mobility technology can significantly improve the lives and livelihoods of people.  A sustainable transport future for Australia is possible and requires a deliberative and ambitious shift from the status quo along a defined policy agenda. Autonomous vehicles, electric vehicles and shared mobility can reduce carbon emissions, other airborne particulates, congestion and road accidents and improve accessibility.  

However, without a considered policy direction, future mobility may also exacerbate existing social and environmental impacts.  A transport system dominated by private autonomous travel could increase journeys and vehicles on the road, which would result in Australia not realising the full potential this technology could offer. By contrast, a shared subscription service would effectively be private mobility on demand and this could significantly reduce congestion by having fewer vehicles on the road.

The report calls on business to determine whether it can take advantage of future mobility opportunities both through its business models and its operations including its assets, fleet, logistics, procurement, and its people. It calls on business and government to work together to demonstrate leadership in the transition to sustainable and zero emissions road transport.

The report presents seven recommendations to enable and incentivize business to play that role as well as a series of best practice case studies to show concrete applications to inspire business leaders.