Smart and low carbon mobility 

Crucial for achieving climate goals, decarbonising airports

Brussels, 23 January 2019 – International mobility experts and partners of the Interreg Central Europe project LAirA (Landside Airport Accessibility), debated the merits of different solutions for low carbon mobility to airports. These solutions are meant to support local and regional authorities, infrastructure providers and airports in achieving their goals for green airport access. 

The conference Towards smart and low carbon mobility, organised in Brussels by the Airport Regions Conference, brought together European institutions (European Commission), international transport associations (UITP), public authorities (Budapest 18th District, Vienna City Council), airports (Vienna Airport, Dubrovnik Airport), and advocacy groups (Transport & Environment). These key players of the clean transport field reflected on the different aspects at the core of green mobility and its implementation.

Erich Valentin, ARC President and a member of the Vienna City Council and the Chairman of the Environment Committee and City Services, stressed the importance of sustainable airport access for the communities: Low carbon mobility to and from the airport is crucial for improving the quality of life of the surrounding communities and for supporting the growth of the airport as a hub that contributes to a greener future for its passengers and employees. 

On behalf of LAirA’s lead partner, Budapest 18th District, Gabor Csaba Sooki-Toth noted that sustainable airport access has an important role in the development of the region and LAirA project aims to support the European vision of sustainable transportation through better urban planning and by providing mobility solutions accessible for regions, airports and users. Andrew Murphy, Manager-Aviation at Transport & Environment, highlighted that airports have a big role to play to change the access to the airport, but also that greater investment and regulation is needed to achieve low carbon mobility.  

The conference mirrored one of the main objectives of LAirA project: to encourage airport passengers and employees to use sustainable transport modes when transitioning from an urban area to the airport. In this sense, the LAirA partners analysed several instruments for low carbon mobility and user incentivisation, such as electric mobility, air-rail links, walking and cycling, shared mobility, intelligent transport systems, wayfinding and road based public transport. In response, Isabelle Vandoorne, Deputy Head of the Sustainable and Intelligent Transport Unit at the European Commission (DG MOVE), said that the recommendations of these analyses could be a valuable input for the European strategy

Sylvain Haon, Senior Director-Strategy at UITP (International Association of Public Transport), agreed that public transport is the most sustainable way for accessing airports and a good connection is fundamental to decrease emissions from land traffic. Ivo Cre, Director Policy & Projects at POLIS, the association representing 75 cities working on public transport, mentioned that integrated sustainable urban mobility policy can stimulate a shift towards cleaner and more sustainable transport modes.  

The solutions and actions presented at this event will help further future activities that will improve and decarbonize access to airports, supporting cleaner airport areas as well as the goals of the Paris Agreement.