United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

Major Group: Science & Technology

Statement by the Scientific & Technological Communities Major Group
March 1st 2011
Mr Chairman
Thank you for letting the Scientific and Technological Communities present the following
If the current trend is maintained, 2/3rds of the world population will live in urban environments
by 2050. In several countries, the urban boundaries are expanding as peri-urban areas, which
would subsequently evolve as new cities. It is thus important to develop a sound scientific
modeling approach to allow designing integrated and inter-modal transport networks.
Transportation technologies are progressing on many fronts towards lower emissions of air
pollutants and greenhouse gases. Despite this, there remains a strong need to reduce demand for
personal vehicle transport and long-distance road transport of goods.
Nowadays, motorized transport depends on oil for its energy needs and contributes a growing
share to global emissions of greenhouse gases. The contribution of biofuels and flex-fuel cars to
sustainable development is a fact in some countries. However, introducing biomass production
for fuels should be based on sound studies which have to evaluate risks of competition with food
production and potential effects on crop prices.
Actions for promoting cleaner fuels and vehicles, including hybrid and electric cars, must also be
complemented by policies to diversify mobility means, to introduce efficient and sustainable
public transport in particular in urban zones, and to enhance public space management in cities
with new modes instead of car usage.
The scientific, engineering and technological communities can play a key role in understanding
the policy-implementation nexus, what has worked and what not, in order to provide the required
information for developing new policies in this domain.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman