Issue: June 2019, Less emissions, more quality of life – How to make transport sustainable?
“Cross-sector collaboration is important and valuable.”
Interview with Sabine Nallinger (Stiftung 2°)
A single measure is not enough. A single actor is not enough. If the transport transition is to succeed, everyone must act – not just scientists and businesspeople but also private individuals and policy-makers. Sabine Nallinger is Managing Director of Foundation 2° – German Businesses for Climate Protection. In conversation with eco@work she explains where businesses see the greatest need for action, outlines specific steps that businesses can take to improve sustainability and highlights the importance of cross-sector collaboration.
Ms Nallinger, how optimistic are you that a transition to sustainable mobility can succeed?
I can see that things are happening at many different levels. And that really does make me optimistic. For example, consider the opportunities opened up by digital aids. They have made it much easier to link different forms of transport – including carsharing – and to do without a car of one’s own. There is also a noticeable change in awareness, especially among younger people. I think that people are very open to multimodal and sustainable mobility. In businesses, too, action on climate change is now a central issue.
But we really do need to get going. The transport transition is something that cannot be postponed if we take the Paris Climate Agreement seriously. Furthermore, it is not just about reducing emissions but also about improving quality of life for everyone. Sustainable mobility can also contribute to that.
Where should businesses begin in order to contribute to the transport transition?
There are all sorts of starting points. One of the most important must be logistics. Forecasts predict a further sharp rise in freight transport – businesses must take action on this and manage their logistics far more smartly than they do now. Transporting goods is so cheap that there is still scope to tap and some storage, for example, is taking place on the road. This needs to change, so that there is greater pressure to act. I am convinced that it would be worthwhile for businesses to focus now on less polluting transport options, shorter journeys and smart technologies.
In a consortium project that was completed recently, the members of Foundation 2° discussed various ideas for greater sustainability in connection with buildings, industrial production and transport.
That’s right. This project was about cross-industry consideration of the areas that need to be tackled first in order to cut emissions on a large scale. But it was also about raising awareness of the challenges and opportunities we face. There were eight individual projects, including one on the subject of logistics: programmers created a platform where businesses could put forward ideas for more sustainable logistics. These were reviewed and then made available to anyone who was interested.
What else was considered?
One project looked at setting up charging posts for electric cars in Aldi Süd car parks. The charging points would be available outside business hours and so would significantly improve the infrastructure for e-vehicles and make them easier to use. Deutsche Telekom, which is creating an app for using the charging posts, is also involved in the project – as is the energy company EnBW, which is supplying the charging infrastructure and the electricity. The first charging posts are due to be trialled in Munich this year. This project not only demonstrates very clearly how much businesses can do – it also highlights the value and importance of cross-sector collaboration between different companies.
Thank you for talking to eco@work.
The interviewer was Christiane Weihe.
Talking to eco@work: Sabine Nallinger, Managing Director of Foundation 2° – German Businesses for Climate Protection
Sabine Nallinger is a town, transport and environment planner who has been Managing Director of the Berlin-based Foundation 2° – German Businesses for Climate Protection since 2014. Prior to that she worked for both the state capital of Munich and for Stadtwerke München (Munich municipal utility services), where she headed the research and development department and was responsible for numerous research and collaborative projects at European and international level. Since 2008 she has been a town councillor for Bündnis 90/Die Grünen (the German Green Party) in Munich, dealing primarily with energy, urban development and transport policy issues. In 2014 she was a candidate for the office of mayor of Munich.
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