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Transport ministers: Energy efficiency and transport-related emissions are the challenges in curbing climate change

Press release 30.05.2008 16.10
Finnish original released on 30.05.2008 12.31

Increasing energy efficiency and reducing emissions are the most significant challenges in curbing climate change in the transport sector. This was one of the messages of transport ministers from 35 countries who concluded the International Transport Forum in Leipzig, Germany, on 30 May.

The ministers stressed in the summit findings, a set of Key Messages, that responding to the challenges calls for broad-based cooperation between all actors in the transport sector. They put special emphasis on reducing transport-related emissions and increasing energy efficiency.

The Ministers called for a strategic approach to meeting the emission reduction challenge. The strategic measures should combine the objectives of different policy sectors and efficiently utilise new technologies. In preparing strategic measures consideration must be given to all transport modes and all levels of operation.

New technologies play a key role in the efforts to reduce energy consumption and dependence on oil in transport. The aim is a transport system with lower levels of CO2 emissions. Particularly short-term action must include easy and cost-efficient measures, such as eco-driving.

It is possible to curb climate change by intensifying the existing transport policy measures and plans. Development of public transport services and favouring environmentally friendly transport modes are good examples of such measures.

Close cooperation between governments and involvement of all transport sectors and interest groups are needed to achieve results. International organisations in the field of transport must also be committed to the work.

Ms Anu Vehviläinen, ITF President at the Leipzig meeting and Finland’s Minister of Transport, said that all members of the Transport Forum are committed to combat climate change by means of transport policy. “The starting points and detailed objectives may vary between member countries but we all have the same goal. We are confronted with a big challenge. Broad-based cooperation and systematic action make it possible to implement a vision of a transport sector that has a low level of emissions and high energy efficiency”, Vehviläinen said.

“Transport ministers’ messages on joint objectives is a significant step forward in international cooperation for a climate-friendlier transport sector”, she stressed.

Further information:
Mr Juhani Tervala, Director-General of the Transport Policy Department, tel. +358 050 552 7260 (at the venue in Leipzig)
Ms Minna Kivimäki, Ministerial Adviser, tel. +358 40 532 5657 (at the venue in Leipzig)