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After months in crisis mode, the world is now finally beginning to look towards recovery and rebuilding day-to-day life.
As we start to rebuild, we must think about the far bigger challenges that still lie ahead of us: the ever-increasing trend of urbanisation and the global climate crisis. We must take the unique opportunity that this global pandemic has provided, and build our cities back more sustainably and with the goal of tackling these bigger challenges from the get-go.
For World Environment Day (5 June 2020), we teamed up with the United Nations Environment Programme to deliver a joint statement on the necessity for cities to build back better with more public transport.
Clean, efficient, and green public transport reduces air pollution in cities, including CO2 emissions. Public transport should therefore be part of climate action plans to reach global targets set by the Paris Agreement.
Public transport also gives city streets back to people and re-allocates space away from private cars, increasing the quality of life and green spaces in cities.
Finally, public transport is plays a key role in the economic re-development of cities and regions around the world throughout this recovery period.
Public transport and nature are natural allies.
Signed by our Secretary General, Mohamed Mezhani, and Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme, Inger Andersen, the statement provides further details on the ways in which public transport builds a more sustainable world.