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Are You Riding Sustainable?

More specifically, some SDGs are directly connected to sustainable transport through specific targets and indicators, such as SDG target 3.6 (on road safety), SDG target 9.1 (on infrastructure), and SDG target 11.2 (on providing access to safe, affordable, accessible, and sustainable transport systems for all and expanding public transport)

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The clock is ticking as 2030 nearing us and we are fast approaching the UN mandated Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) targets. It is time to accelerate towards our climate goals, and a practical way of going about it is spreading the addressable canvas across domains. One of the crucial areas in this regard is sustainable transport. Given how heavily dependent our economies, quality of life and mobility are, it is safe to say that we just cannot ignore it.

 All the ‘means of implementation’, as indicated in SDG 17, are essential to advancing sustainable transport. More specifically, some SDGs are directly connected to sustainable transport through specific targets and indicators, such as SDG target 3.6 (on road safety), SDG target 9.1 (on infrastructure), and SDG target 11.2 (on providing access to safe, affordable, accessible, and sustainable transport systems for all and expanding public transport).

“There is no denying the impact the transport sector has had on the environment. Years of utilizing fossil fuels to power vehicles has resulted in significant damage to the environment. According to the United Nations, the transport sector globally contributes approximately 25% of all energy related greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions” says Raghavendra Vaidya, Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer, DTICI. As industries across the globe have embraced sustainability, the transport sector is also witnessing a slow but gradual shift.

What are the projected challenges in this sector?

As per some estimates, global population is projected to increase to 8.5 billion by 2030. As per a   UN Report, by 2050 about 70% of the world’s population will live in cities and 85% of the world’s economic output will be generated by cities. In additional to lower CO2 emissions, sustainable transport does not deplete valuable and limited fossil fuels, rather it employs renewable energy.  However, to achieve a true and lasting impact of sustainability in this sector, we must undertake a continuous process of implementing policies and plans for improving the vehicle efficiencies including electrification of vehicle fleets, efficiency norms, and integration of hydrogen powered or renewable vehicles.

What lies ahead?

 The sector is far from done with respect to sustainability. One big challenge is the substantial upfront capital investments required to make commercial transport start relying on the renewable energy sources of supply. The infrastructure to be put in place across the length and breadth of the country could cost many billions of dollars in short number of years. At the same time,  Innovations in technology lie at the heart of this transformation and both nations and organisations must invest in developing technologies to ensure sustainability is economical, environmentally friendly, and socially acceptable. The trucking industry is looking for using green Hydrogen fuel for long distance transportation. Mining industry is keen to junk diesel trucks for carrying ores and coal haulers, by battery operated trucks. Batteries in these trucks can be charged by hydro power or solar power units supplying electricity at charging points .  “At DTICI, our focus is on future innovations and developing solutions, specifically in zero-emission transport. Taking into account the current trajectory of the industry, it becomes clear that carbon-free vehicles with autonomous driving technology is the future, and these are areas we are dedicating our efforts to develop.” notes Raghavendra Vaidya, MD and CEO, DTICI.

In the transport sector, there is a complete business transformation taking place backed by emerging technologies across automation, connectivity, electromobility and overall digitalisation. Soon we will be witnessing emergence of completely new products and solutions, new business models, manufacturing & supply chains as well as new partnerships, like never before. This, in turn, will have a profound impact on people, company culture and way of working, including the need to continuously learn new skill sets and ability to collaborate across domains will be greatly valued. “I am happy that much of this transformation will have its epicenter in India. At Volvo Group in India we host one of the largest R&D & digital IT site for the group – and thus, India will play a key role in the group’s global technology & digital transformation.” Notes Kamal Bali, President & MD, Volvo Group, India.

While a lot of good work is being done in promoting sustainability in the transport sector, we still have, as Frost would put it miles to go before we sleep!


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cars transport BW Sustainability SDG Goals environment