• Jessica Zimmermann

The Key to Cooling Down the Summer Heat is New Mobility

Updated: Aug 2

Why turning to the mobility industry could be the key for staving off global warming?

Year after year, our summers have been getting hotter and hotter. The sad reality is that without significant reductions in our greenhouse gas emissions, this summer is probably one of the coolest we’ll experience over the years to come.


According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC),


“Limiting global warming to 1.5°C would require “rapid and far-reaching” transitions in land, energy, industry, buildings, transport, and cities. Global net human-caused emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) would need to fall by about 45 percent from 2010 levels by 2030, reaching ‘net zero’ around 2050. This means that any remaining emissions would need to be balanced by removing CO2 from the air.”

We’re racing against the clock. If we want our world to stay habitable, we need to look to the transportation industry as it is key to helping us turn down the heat.


Why We Should All Be Rooting for New Mobility

The transportation industry is one of the largest emitter of greenhouse gasses, responsible for about 16.2% of all global emissions. Consequently, working towards making the transportation industry sustainable will have a positive and significant impact on the habitability of our planet. However, on its own, it won’t be enough to stop global warming or climate change.

We need the other big emissions industries to reduce and eliminate their greenhouse gas emissions as well. This is where new mobility comes into play.


The food that made it to your table was grown somewhere in the world, the clothes that you’re wearing were designed and sown in another part of the world, and perhaps you may have even considered commute times as you chose your current job? Movement is foundational to who we are as humans, the decisions we make, and the products and systems we create. We all have some kind of experience with mobility and this is why new mobility is in such a unique position to greatly influence and transform other industries.


Influencing Energy Production – Adoption Creates Energy Pressure

The burning of fossil fuels for energy is what makes the transportation industry the largest emitter of greenhouse gasses. Inherently, that means that the energy revolution sits at the center of the mobility revolution. If we want sustainable mobility, we need to find a solution for sustainable energy production. The quicker we are at adopting new mobility the more we put pressure on energy providers to meet demand, make investing in green energy lucrative for energy providers.


Influencing Industry – Green Routes for Goods & Raw Materials

The mobility revolution is clearly more nuanced than just building sustainable vehicles and replacing current energy sources with clean ones or else we would have already solved the transportation portion of our climate crisis. The transportation industry doesn’t just move people from point A to point B, it also moves goods and raw materials. New mobility provides us with an opportunity to reimagine how we move these items around the world as well as the ability to influence sustainable behavior in the industry (goods and raw materials production) sector. One way that new mobility can influence more sustainable production of goods and raw materials is by enabling the creation of what we call “green routes.” Green routes promote the sustainable movement of goods and raw materials as they can be optimized for the movement of local goods and raw materials (based on demand), safe and easily accessible for sustainable vehicles, and generously equipped with charging infrastructure.


We see evidence of these types of “green routes” emerging in Europe’s metropolitan cities where companies such as Flink, Gorillas, and Getir deliver groceries on-demand (sometimes within 10 minutes) via electric bikes, scooters, and moped. New mobility gives us the power to create transportation microcosms centered around local goods and raw materials and based on local demand while being just as, if not more efficient.


Influencing Commercial & Residential – Cities Built for People

Our cities have been built for privately owned cars. With the introduction of new mobility, we have a chance to phase out privately owned, combustion-engine vehicles, in exchange for more sustainable mobility options and in the process, free up a lot of space in our cities. Then, the question becomes, what do we do with all this available space? If 17.5% of greenhouse gas emissions comes from businesses and homes that are generating heating, why not use the extra space for solar panel parks to heat a neighborhood? Or green spaces to act as carbon sinks?



Overcoming Our Human Nature

New mobility is our speed booster, our best shot at closing in on the gap between now and the emissions levels we need to reach by 2030. How close we’ll get exactly will depend on things like:

  1. The pace at which we transition from private ownership toward shared & usership models.

  2. The ways in which we integrate new mobility into our cities

  3. Whether or not we capitalize on synergies between other industries

We’ll still need more innovative ideas and speedy implementation across all industries if we hope to cross the finish line in time. However, our biggest challenge will be facing ourselves, our human nature and it's aversion to change. But we have a choice. We can choose to embrace change now or have change forced upon us. We can fight global warming with new mobility or watch our world melt away due to record-breaking heat waves. To us, riding with new mobility sounds a lot more fun.


 

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