Green areas accessible only on foot or by bicycle. A fast and efficient transport system with a drastic reduction in traffic and an increase in car and bike sharing. And the use of a private car in combination with above and below ground modes of transport. In just two words, sustainable mobility. What might seem just a dream for many is being turned into reality in many cities with a project designed and promoted by the WBCSD, the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, an association which has gathered together more than 200 multinational companies from more than 30 countries, and which was presented to the Italian public for the first time by Pirelli at the CSR and Social Innovation Exhibition.
Pirelli is the only Italian company, together with other companies from the automotive and parts sector, to participate in the "Sustainable Mobility Project 2.0"- led by the WBCSD and involving other test cities such as Hamburg, Bangkok, Chengdu, Indore and Lisbon -in Campinas, the location for one if its Brazilian factories, Pirelli has developed a project of sustainable mobility with the intention of identifying the new methods of evaluation for the performance of urban mobility which have recently received the support of the European Commission, and transport solutions which help deal with the predicted changes in demographics, which between now and 2050 will see an increase in the world population to as much as 9.1 billion people (from the current 7 billion) and a higher concentration of the population in urban areas.
The central idea is to assist local institutions and reassess their plans for urban mobility with the aim of incentivising the use of public transport, a more efficient use of private cars and the use of bicycles, with the aim of improving quality of life and combatting pollution.
Within the scope of the project, Pirelli has supplied support and know-how to conduct, among other things, a survey of the population of the Brazilian city in order to identify the main issues related to urban mobility. And it is thanks to this support that the local authorities at Campinas have planned special lanes for public transport, as well as the spread of active mobility solutions, such as bicycle lanes with the city limits.
"Working on the development of the project," – explained Lorenzo Cella, Department of Sustainability and Risk Management of the Group - "We found that the key element for the effectiveness of a plan of sustainable mobility is the dialogue between the different stakeholders, from the institutions, to the inhabitants, to the private sector. When integrating the expectations of the people involved, it became clear that innovative solutions such as the improvement of infrastructure, transport and road safety must be accompanied by a real change in the culture, meaning an evolution in the habits and commuting patterns of the people who live in and work in the city. Innovation, dialogue and culture, emerged, therefore, as the bearers of the common goal of reaching genuine sustainable mobility."
The active participation of Pirelli in the development and promotion of a more sustainable mobility is part of the social responsibility initiatives which have historically characterised the company since its conception, more than 140 years ago. From the beginning Pirelli has followed a development model orientated towards sustainable and responsible growth, and works daily to reduce the environmental impact of its products and its production processes, and with constant care towards its personnel and the local communities in which it operates.
The work at Campinas and the other cities involved is just the first challenging and important step towards a future that should and needs to more comprehensively involve local government in order to improve urban transportation and make it more sustainable in every sense. But the "Sustainable Mobility Project 2.0" doesn't stop here: the 2020 objective is to involve many more cities than before, from all over the world, heighten the dialogue with the relative public administrations and increase the network of companies and authorities involved in order to ensure the project succeeds.