United NationsDepartment of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

Major Group: Local Authorities

Local Authority statement on Transport at CSD 19 IPM
Delivered by Susanne Salz, ICLEI on 1 March 2011
Thank you, Chair.
We very much welcome and support the Report of the Secretary-General regarding transport. As Local Authority Major Group, we congratulate the Secretary General for including the urban dimension so strongly in the paper. A large part of the transport issues we face globally play out in cities. At the same time, we recognize that certain issues are particular challenges at the rural level. Both need to be addressed.
As Local Authority Major Group, we support the ?Avoid- Shift- Improve?-Approach, meaning the promotion of ?appropriate combinations of measures that can avoid or reduce unnecessary transport and travel where possible, encourage a shift towards highly efficient and low-carbon modes of transport, and promote system-wide efficiency improvements?.
The report includes the need for policy packages necessary at the urban level, including firstly investment in adequate public transport, secondly facilitation and encouragement of non-motorized vehicle use and regulation of the use of private motor vehicles, and thirdly integration of transport considerations in urban development planning. Numerous local authorities are taking such actions around the world, in developed and developing countries. Many local authorities would benefit from better enabling conditions including better access to financing options.
We would like to emphasize that sustainable transport policies also achieve co-benefits including improved health, lower CO2 emissions, reduced congestion, lower travel time and fewer accidents.
The Secretary General?s reports as well as some statements made here today underscore the need for action in cities. Action in cities points to the need for local governments to implement sustainable transport policies. It is therefore crucial that the global and national level enables the local governments to implements these policies. We know what needs to be done, and we know that it can be done.
Delegates, Ladies and Gentlemen, the Local Authority Major Group represents thousands of local governments which are ready to implement policies for more sustainable urban transport. We call upon you to enable the local governments to implement such policies and create the sustainable urban transport we need.