Sustainability is one of the 2030 objectives set by the European Union and the city of Madrid does not want to be left behind in this objective. To this end, it is committed to sustainable mobility within the framework of the Madrid 360 environmental strategy.
In order to achieve the goal to be reached in eight years, Madrid Green Mobility Lab, a non-profit association created in 2021, was created with the aim of achieving better management of sustainable mobility, and thus positioning the capital as an international benchmark in innovation and technology in the mobility sector, according to the Madrid City Council.
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A public-private strategy to promote sustainability
This project brings together EMT, Kearney, Pinsent Masons, IESE Madrid, ICAI, and its mobility observatory, IE’s Center for Transport Economics and Infrastructure Management. Other partners include representatives from Abertis, Acciona, Aecoc, ALSA, Avanza, Confebus, CTT, Estacionamientos y Servicios, Ferrovial, Fujitsu, Goal Systems, Goggo, Indra, Irizar, Itinere, Lodisna, Openvia by Globalvia, Porsche, Sacyr, SEUR, Siemens, Solaris TK Elevadores, Universidad Camilo José Cela and Uno Logística. These are the main institutional, business, and Spanish associations of sectors that converge in mobility, to achieve a public-private strategy that manages to promote sustainability. Uno Logística strongly supports the project since, according to Francisco Aranda, its president, “we are going to make available all our knowledge, all our experience, and also to communicate our real operations, our operational needs, so that once this is well known, together we will be able to implement projects that will demonstrate the effectiveness and efficiency of the initiatives that are carried out.”
In addition, this employers’ association has experience with both national and international companies, so they can make their knowledge available to others and thus create synergies, move forward and transform the sector.
In the words of Mayor José Luis Martínez Almeida at the presentation of the Madrid Green Mobility Lab, this project “will be made up of six sections that will address all perspectives of mobility in the city of Madrid, and will work together on parameters that affect mobility. These pillars are the low-emission city, connected mobility for people, urban logistics, zero-emission vehicle industry, training and innovation, and public-private collaboration, and European funds. Francisco Aranda stresses the importance of the European Union’s support, as projects are needed that, through innovation, will enable them to be more efficient, and the search for economic aid that Brussels makes available to companies to undertake the energy transformation is very important, because the cost of sustainable energies is considerably much higher than that of traditional energy sources.
In the race to achieve sustainability objectives, the European Union maintains that transport accounts for 25% of greenhouse gas emissions and is seeking to reduce them by 90% by 2050 through various measures. This figure is closely related to the objectives set by UNO Logistics regarding sustainable mobility in cities, not only for people, but also for goods. “First of all, the current city model is not working. Secondly, we believe that the future city model has to be very flexible; and thirdly, we consider that we are a key player in this future city model. It is very important to carry out an analysis of how the concrete projects that give rise to the city of the future should be.”
For them, technology and digitalization are the levers that can help to achieve an improvement in the environment, this is specified in the following projects: the design of efficient routes so that products spend less time on the streets, positively influencing the decongestion of cities and equally improving ecological sustainability; they also consider the possibility of creating an app for loading and unloading areas, in which reservations can be made for more efficient and effective use.
Also, UNO Logistics questions the mandatory use of electric vehicles and calls for energy neutrality that does not require the use of a specific technology, since in order to have a 100% electric fleet, it would be necessary to have a recharging infrastructure much more extensive than the existing one at the moment, as well as legal certainty and a protocol for recycling batteries in the future, which is still non-existent. This is contradictory because from January 1, low emission zones come into force and therefore logistics companies are forced to purchase electric vehicles to be able to make their deliveries, which are much more expensive, they denounce.
UNO advocates the use of eco-combustion vehicles, “this allows the use of current vehicles, without the need to purchase a new one,” Aranda pointed out.
Finally, although Confebus and ALSA strongly support the Madrid Green Mobility Lab initiative, they maintain that it is too early to evaluate results and are studying initiatives to present to this window opened by the Madrid City Council with the help of firms such as Pinsent Masons.
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First published in elEconomista.es, a third-party contributor translated and adapted the article from the original. In case of discrepancy, the original will prevail.
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