European Transport Commissioner: Transport must surf the green wave

Posted: 9 March 2021 | | No comments yet

The European Commissioner for Transport has also revealed that the Commission will look to implement so-called “polluter-pays” principles into place.

Boris Johnson pledges £300 million to greener forms of transport

European Commissioner for Transport, Adina Vălean, has highlighted the benefits to citizens of digitalised urban mobility “for travelling more efficiently, safer, more sustainably”, but cautioned that new digital mobility services should not become gatekeepers and acknowledged the risks associated with open data initiatives in the mobility sector.

“Public transport must surf the wave of the digital and green transformation” said Commissioner Vălean. “Putting the right price on transport solutions is key, if we want users to take into account the impact of their choices. Our goal is to put the polluter-pays and user-pays principles into practice.

“Our aim is to increase multimodality and work with all types of new mobility solutions, notably Mobility as a Service [MaaS] and multimodal digital services,” Vălean continued.

“We should be able to purchase tickets for a multimodal journey, benefit from interoperable payment options and see various transport services integrated into a service accessible on demand.”

Finally, the Commissioner explained that the Commission’s policy toolbox “will also consider guidelines for the safe use of micromobility devices as well as the assessment of the need for measures to ensure a level playing field for local on-demand passenger transport and ride-hailing platforms.”

Commissioner Vălean’s remarks, delivered in a pre-recorded interview at an event hosted today by the Centre on Regulation in Europe (CERRE), come as the Commission prepares the revision of its Urban Mobility Package, expected during Q3 of 2021.

Building on the Commissioner’s remarks, Pearse O’Donohue, Director, Future Networks, DG CNECT underlined the importance of data: “Data is the essential ingredient for transforming from transport services to Mobility as a Service (MaaS).

“That is an essential point [the CERRE report] has grasped… MaaS can be seen as a way of managing the common good through the creation of another common good… namely a public data platform.”

“Organising Mobility Authorities (OMAs) must acquire new skills and position themselves as a trusted third party, one that can incorporate all data into a public platform available to all stakeholders, while ensuring equal rights and obligations for all parties,” added Yves Crozet, co-author of the report and CERRE Research Fellow.

The report suggests using regulation to help develop multimodal mobility in urban and suburban areas, where individual car travel remains the favoured mode of transport.

“MaaS is a tool that can be used to facilitate multimodality, decrease costs to commuters, and, potentially, as a way to increase overall mobility funding,” said Jean Coldefy, co-author of the report.

“As such, OMAs should be in charge of public space management – including access to public transport hubs – park and ride, bicycle parks, cycling lanes – and data management.”