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Ibm survey: “Increasing public and electric transport to save cities”

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ROME – Transport consumes 20% of the energy available worldwide, largely derived from fossil sources. Although the automotive industry is working on solutions capable of reducing emissions, there are still many obstacles, both infrastructural and habits, which affect the amount of people and vehicles that move every day, especially in large urban conglomerates.

IBM has released the results of the Sustainable Mobility Consumer Survey, a study conducted on 5,000 people in 5 major cities around the world – Rome, Chicago, London, Munich, San Francisco – to investigate opinions and issues regarding one of the central themes in the challenge against climate change: mobility. The full-bodied study also makes many comparisons between the different cities covered by the survey, pointing out the differences that have also been recorded in relation to the pre-during and post lockdown periods due to the Covid pandemic. Fifty-three pages in Power Point that highlight a very varied cross-section at the city level and also between different nations.

For the city of Rome, for example, the study showed that most Romans (82%) believe that their environmental footprint is important, but only 56% take this into account in their daily transport choices. High costs represent the first barrier to choosing more sustainable modes of transport, but nearly 1 in 2 Romanians say that comfort and speed are more important than sustainability.

For 4 in 10 Romans, relying on apps to monitor public transport and plan routes is now commonplace for half the time. 80% of Romans are convinced that electric vehicles are a truly sustainable option, second only to walking and before public transport and bicycles and scooters. More than two-thirds of respondents said they would consider purchasing an electric vehicle in the next few years; however, high costs remain an important barrier for 56% of people, followed by the lack of charging stations in the area (27%).

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61% of Romans believe that urban infrastructures do not adequately support public transport or the use of electric vehicles (for 52%), a limit particularly felt by women and over 65: 43% and 51%, respectively, it does not believe that there are sufficient sustainable transport options.

An increase in electric / hybrid public transport (30%) and a reduction in public transport costs (25%) are the most suitable solutions by respondents to improve the environmental sustainability of urban mobility, in the face of options such as increasing cycle paths, intelligent traffic control and the availability of charging points for electric vehicles.

So what can be done to encourage a shift towards more sustainable mobility? IBM has identified three possible directions for action: reduce car ownership costs by monetizing connected car services, such as navigation applications, traffic monitoring and adverse weather conditions. The consumer’s expectation is increasingly shifting from the physical and technical characteristics of the car to the inclusion of services that make the journey an experience, not just a shift; Building cross-industrial ecosystems to remove obstacles related to car charging. Charging times, connected to the power of the grid, cannot be solved only by the automotive industries, but require collaboration with utilities to build “energy marketplaces” to allow for the balancing of energy supply and demand.

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