Moving Things & People

New collaboration for climate smart mobility

Caroline Wendt
September 21, 2021

Streets with more interaction, biking and walking space, platforms that highlight attractive travel alternatives and small robots that take online deliveries – these are some of the potential solutions discussed during the kickoff of Klimatsmart Mobilitet 2030 (Climate Smart Mobility 2030). The initiative is a collaboration between Viable Cities and Drive Sweden to improve the work with climate neutral mobility in cities and benefit from the strengths of each other’s innovation programs.

Vinnova is the financier of Swedens 17 innovation programs. Two of them belong to Viable Cities, where they work with Klimatneutrala städer 2030 (climate neutral cities 2030) and Drive Sweden which focusses on future mobility systems. Mobility is key to become a climate smart city and the city in return is of great importance to create the mobility of the future. Therefore, both programs initiated a collaboration to come forward with new solutions to transport people and goods in a sustainable manner.  

However, the transformation is complex as a number of speakers during the Kick-Off confirmed. Matthew Baldwin from EU Commission gave information about the EU, climate smart mobility 2030 and the EU Program which provides support for 100 cities in their work with zero emissions. He stressed the importance of social sustainability and paying attention to questions of gender, class and health in the context of mobility.

Anna Kramers leads the research programme Mistra SAMS at KTH. The projects focus lies, among others, on services that can reduce the amount of travel undertaken and making the travels that need to be done more climate neutral with the help of biking, walking and climate friendly common transport options. Some important factors have already been identified for the future mobility service platform.

− It is important that the public sector is part of creating a neutral platform that functions as an open market place so that many actors are attracted to be there at the same time, says Anna Kramers. It is also important to make services attractive which are better than a car. Maybe we can use AI to combine matching services to help us making good offers.

Mobility as a service was also the topic of discussion of a panel group consisting of Sofia Löfstrand, LIMA-project at Drive Sweden, Sandra Viktor, Linköpings municipality, Charlotte Lejon, Swedish Energy Agency and Göran Smith, RISE. Besides the importance of creating platforms to simplify people’s travels it was also highlighted that we need to develop further the transportation of goods which increased during the pandemic and continues to do so. Here, we will need new solutions spanning the range from long transports to the last mile. Small robots can possibly play a role in the latter. The discussion was led by the experts Pontus Westerberg, UN-Habitat, Ulf Ceder, Scania and Camilla Alfredsson, Helsingborg City.

Another important aspect of future mobility revolves around street design. Dan Hill, Vinnova, Anders Bengtsson, Future by Lund, Vaike Fors, Halmstad University and Steinar Danielsson, Volvo Car Mobility talked and exchanged views about this topic. They emphasized that nowadays ideas about street design are still influenced by the conception of the car as the primary transport vehicle. However, one could increase the space for pedestrians and cyclists and turn a street more into a space of public interaction than traffic. To get there, we need to change our ways of thinking. Andreas Bengtsson explained how Lund is working with the topic of the city environment via LundaMaTs, a strategy for sustainable travels, to increase the attractiveness of walking and cycling.

Hans Lindberg and Anna Tenje are representing the cities of Umeå and Växjö which are two of nine cities that are part of the project Klimatneutrala städer 2030. The project, that Lund also takes part in, receives support from Viable Cities. The two representatives talked about their work in becoming climate neutral cities.

The event marked the beginning of a forum where different actors can exchange experiences but also the first meeting of an annual series of events where progresses will be reported. If you missed the event and want to see some of the discussions, you can click here.

You can subscribe to the programmes newsletters at Viable Cities and Drive Sweden.

Are you interested in reading more about the collaboration? The heads of the programs Sofie Vennersten and Olga Kordas exchange thoughts on the alliance (in Swedish).

Translation: Christin Scheller


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