We began day one of the Transforming Transportation conference with discussions on how to best use the $175 billion committed to sustainable transport by multilateral development banks at Rio+20. Discussions focused around the definition of sustainable transportation itself, and then shifted to the processes for establishing accountability and transparency, two key factors in building demand for sustainable transport finance.
It was quickly acknowledged that in a world where annual investment in transport infrastructure is $1 trillion per year, the $175 billion over 10 years need to be leveraged. Leveraging will be crucial to answering the challenges of population and urban growth.
In the afternoon, less conventional, or even informal, modes of transportations were discussed. After an opening statement from Clayton Lane, Chief Operating Officer, EMBARQ, mentioning the fast growth of bike sharing in very recent years, a variety of experts shared stories about their experiences with bike-sharing in their own countries. The session presented some interesting new thinking on how to approach bike-sharing as an integral part of a transit system, including some innovative solutions for funding it.
One figure captured our attention: 85% of bike-sharing users in China are new to biking in cities. This is a global trend. Bike-sharing seems to be a great way to capture a new population for transit.
Stay tuned tomorrow, as we offer live web streaming of day two of the Transforming Transportation conference. Go to TransformingTransportation.org and click on the “Watch Live” tab.