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26 June 2017

Luxembourg starts operation of all-electric buses

The first commercially manufactured all-electric Volvo buses have started operating in the city of Differdange in Luxembourg. The buses, named the Volvo 7900 Electric, can carry 85 passengers and are 12-metres long with low floors and three doors. They have 80% lower energy consumption than a comparable diesel bus, are silent, exhaust emission-free and are equipped with an electric motor and lithium-ion batteries.
Differdange’s focus on electrically powered buses is part of the city’s ambitious sustainability drive, with public transport forming a crucial focus area. The four electric buses are used on four routes with lengths from 8km to 9.5km. Each bus is driven approximately 25 minutes and then the buses’ batteries are fast-charged in three to six minutes at the end stations using an open interface known as OppCharge (opportunity charging), which follows the ACEA (European Automobile Manufacturers Association) recommendations.
For more information: click here.

Digitilisation is changing public transport

Digital technologies have the potential to deliver a revolutionary impact on the public transport sector. UITP’s (International Association of Public Transport) new report Digitalisation in public transport explores the impact of this trend in public transport, outlining the opportunities it brings as well as the challenges faced.
Digitalisation brings a host of opportunities for the public transport sector, including opportunities to increase efficiency and improve quality, lower costs, open up new revenue streams, improve the customer experience and loyalty, and explore new services, with new concepts like ‘mobility as a service’ (MaaS) and new emerging technologies like driverless cars. However, digitilisation also brings a number of significant challenges which must be faced. As digitalisation creeps into every aspect of the public transport business, clarifying where and how digitalisation is affecting the sector is a complex exercise. UITP has identified some key issues:

Europe on the Move: Actions and initiatives of the Commission for clean, competitive and connected mobility that affects everyone

Mobility has a major influence on the daily lives of European citizens and directly employs more than 11 million people. The European Commission adopts a long-term strategy for a fundamental modernisation of European mobility and transport up to 2025. The aim is to help the sector to stay competitive in a socially fair transition towards clean energy, zero emissions and digitalisation.
"Europe on the Move" consists of:

  • A first series of 8 legislative initiatives specifically targeting road transport. This sector is of particular importance as it directly employs 5 million Europeans, while contributing to almost a fifth of the EU's greenhouse gas emissions. The proposals will improve the functioning of the road haulage market and help improve workers' social and employment conditions.
  • The Commission also intends to promote seamless mobility solutions so that citizens and businesses can travel easily across Europe. For instance, interoperability between tolling systems will enable road users to drive throughout the EU without having to be concerned by different administrative formalities. Common specifications for public transport data will also allow passengers to better plan their journey and follow the best route even if it crosses a border.
  • The EU will drive this transition through targeted legislation and supporting measures, including infrastructure investment, research and innovation.

Integrated Public Transport Optimisation and Planning in Denmark

IPTOP (Integrated Public Transport Optimisation and Planning) project will develop innovative methods for transport service design and supervision that take advantage of previously unavailable traveller data. The practical goals of IPTOP are a balanced improvement in the traveller experience and operating efficiencies, and a consequent increase in public transport market share and progress in the response to climate change.
IPTOP asserts that recent advances in the field of analytics (databases, analysis tools) and new traveller data sources (due to new fare collection technologies) provide an opportunity for a completely fresh and new application of mathematical optimisation at a very large scale. In the past, narrow, localized optimization techniques have demonstrated benefits of 3-16%, according to the scenario and performance indicator used. IPTOP seeks even greater benefits from an integrated, large scale analysis of the transport network.

Intelligent Transport 2017

Taking place at the Queen Elizabeth II Centre in Westminster, London on 31 October 2017, this one-day conference offers a chance for transport professionals to hear the latest developments in the industry.
​This event will be made up of 4 streams; Harnessing Passenger Data, Mobility as a Service, Smart Ticketing and Payments and Real-Time Passenger Information. Attendees will include; Local Authorities, Passenger Transport Executives, Transport Operators, RTPI Consultants, Systems Suppliers and anyone with an interest in the industry.
​The event, organized by EuroTransport, offers discussions, debates, education and high end networking. Learn from the experts, speak to the people in the know, network with peers & colleagues and ultimately open up new revenue streams.
​For more information: click here.

CIVITAS Awards 2017: applications are now open!

The CIVITAS Awards are an opportunity to highlight the most ambitious, innovative and successful efforts in the field of sustainable urban mobility. Winners are showcased as examples of excellence before the press with the hope that they can guide and stimulate cities throughout Europe in the pursuit of sustainable mobility.

  • This year, outstanding CIVITAS Forum member cities can apply to be considered for the following four prestigious titles:
  • The "Bold Measure" Award for a daring and innovative approach that has not been widely implemented yet and positions the city as pioneer in certain thematic categories;
  • The “Take Up” Award for innovative sustainable urban mobility measures that have been successfully transferred from one city to another;
  • The “CIVITAS Legacy” Award for a city that has successfully translated their inspiring and committed involvement in CIVITAS into long-term implementation of innovative measures with a high impact;
  • The “Transformations” Award for significant transformation and progress towards a liveable and smarter city through an integrated set of mobility measures.

This call closes on 14th July 2017, while the results will be published in September 2017.
​For more information: click here.

Prague City Cargo project

Companies Pražské služby, Huawei Technologies, Prague Public Transport together with Czech Technical University signed memorandum regarding preparation of Prague City Cargo project concept.
The Prague City Cargo project combines two main goals. The first is to verify the feasibility concept that would allow the transport of mixed municipal waste mainly by rail transport. The second objective is to find technical possibilities and ecologically friendly ways of temporarily preserving such waste before its energy or material utilization. The idea of the whole project is to create a special tram that would carry garbage in Prague at night. A trash tramway would probably have a chassis and electric equipment from an existing vehicle on which the container is attached.
Prague City Cargo project is in line with the Smart City concept that uses modern technology to improve the quality of city life. The transport of waste by rail transport appears to be a meaningful solution to relieve the over-sized metropolitan traffic burdened by exhalations in conventional shipment of garbage trucks while making good use of the existing tram network.​
For more information: click here.

80% cut in CO2 emissions with 3 revolutions in vehicle technology

There can be an 80% cut in CO2 emissions if cities embrace 3 revolutions (3R) in vehicle technology: automation, electrification, and, most importantly, ride sharing. This report examines analysis from ITDP (Institute for Transportation & Development Policy) and UC Davis showing how 3R synergy provides 40% reduction in urban vehicle transportation costs globally by 2050.
​Ride-sharing and renewable energy sources are critical to its success.
​For more information: click here.

Tram system in Aarhus (Denmark) reduces emissions

A new tram system in Aarhus has achieved an impressive feat: it will increase mobility and cut down on emissions. It is estimated that the project will help Aarhus city save over 40 million euros.
​The first stage of the light rail project will be a new 12 kilometre line, named the "Urban Line". This will commence at Aarhus central station and pass through key locations in the city before connecting to an existing line that is being converted for light rail operation. 17 new stops will be added, while park and ride facilities near existing stops have been refurbished already. The project's feasibility study was funded by ELENA, a joint initiative from the European Investment Bank and European Commission.
​Once the new service is operational, it is expected to carry 39,000 passengers daily at speeds of up to 100km per hour. It is also expected to contribute 47GW of annual energy savings and avoid 7,300 tonnes of CO² emissions each year. Being powered by electricity, the system helps to reduce energy consumption, noise, and air pollution.
​In the longer term, the light rail system will make a substantial contribution to Aarhus’s ambition to become CO2 neutral by 2030.
​For more information: click here.

Prague city prepares for the electric buses deployment on regular route

As part of the long-term emission reduction strategy, the Prague Transport Company has been testing for a year and a half SOR electric bus. This bus is operated on standard lines 163 and 213 and the total mileage from the start of traffic reached 100,000 km. Overall, it is one of the most successful European electric project. "The experience of previous electro-bus projects enables us to prepare the largest such project in the framework of the Prague Public Transport, bringing it to full electrification", said Jan Šurovský, Technical Director of the Prague Transport Company.
Based on the positive results of long-term testing, Prague Transport Company is preparing full-scale electrification of bus line 207, which connects Žižkov quarter with the central area of ​​the city. For this line, Prague Transport Company plans to purchase 14 standard (12 meter long) electric buses. Due to the need of the necessary charging infrastructure as well as the tender for the delivery of electric buses, the Prague Transport Company expects to start operating these electric buses in September 2018.
​For more information: click here.

7 June 2017

A new EU LIFE programme call: A further 373 million euro is going to improve the environment

At the end of April, the EU launched a new LIFE call. It was preceded by a Czech challenge through which the Ministry of the Environment motivates Czechs interested in LIFE programme, increases their chances of success and offers financial support. The Ministry of the Environment has allocated a total of 53 million crowns from its budget. The number of applications submitted to the Czech call has increased significantly compared to last year, this April the Ministry of the Environment registered three dozens of projects. The European Commission announces a call for applications for LIFE every year. Entrepreneurs, public administrations, non-profit organizations and all other legal entities may apply for financial support for traditional, preparatory and integrated LIFE projects.
"A well-drafted project proposal submitted to the European call is a necessary step to raise funds from the LIFE program through which the EU funds environmental, climate and climate-related activities or innovations. Applications must be addressed directly to the European Commission, which ensures their evaluation", says Director of the Department of Financial of the Ministry of the Environment Tomáš Kažmierski.
​For more information: click here.

The region of Attica supports OASA with modern and environmentally friendly buses

The region of Attica promotes the “green” urban transport.
More specifically it supports the Athens Urban Transport Organization S.A. by financing the supply of 92 hi-tech buses, with a budget of 30,000,000 euros. The aim is to achieve the minimum possible environmental footprint and meet the requirements of the European and national legislation.
The purpose is the reduction of the pollutant emissions and the operating vehicles’ costs, as well as the overall improvement concerning the public transportation services. It concerns the supply of 92 new urban buses hi-tech that will offer high lever security and comfort to citizens. In more detail, it consists of 20 medium sized vehicles, 60 large sized articulated buses and 12 low power electric buses that maintain their own movement autonomy.
​The replacement of certain types of older vehicles used by OASA is necessary, as they tend to surpass their maximum permitted level of usage. At the same time, the pioneering choice of technology of electric buses ensures the minimization of the pollutant emissions in relation with the diesel buses and also highlights the current appearance of the transport system towards the benefit of the environment and its citizens.
For more information: click here.

LIFE GreenYourMove and U-MOB LIFE: Joint effort for transport sustainable for the environment

U-MOB LIFE is the acronym for “European Network for Sustainable Mobility at University”, a European 5-year project co-financed by the European Commission under the LIFE Programme.
U-MOB aims at the creation of a network to facilitate the exchange and transfer of knowledge about sustainable mobility best practices among European universities.The project is running since July 2016, and extends until June 2021.
​For more information: click here.

Compendium on GHG Baselines and Monitoring

A comprehensive guide for GHG quantification of different types of transport mitigation action was officially launched in the beginning of May during the Technical Meeting of United Nations – Framework Convention on Climate change (UNFCCC). The Passenger and Freight Transport Volume of the Compendium on GHG Baselines and Monitoring is a multi-stakeholder effort to provide a resource map of methodologies and tools for establishing baselines and monitoring emissions reductions from mitigation actions.
​The methodologies presented in the volume were chosen with a view to cover a broad range of different mitigation action types in terms of scale, type of intervention and affected modes.
​The publication is coordinated by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) in cooperation with the UNFCCC Secretariat and the Partnership on Sustainable Low Carbon Transport (SloCaT), with funding from the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB), and written with the assistance of the Center for Clean Air Policy (CCAP).
​Download the Volume here.
​For more information: click here.