World has "resolve" to transform transport systems

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Passengers arriving at the Simon Bolivar bus station in Bogotá, Colombia.
Photo: World Bank/Dominic Chavez

The world has the "resolve commitment, imagination and creativity" to transform "transport systems in a sustainable manner that will improve human wellbeing, enhance social progress and protect our planet."

That's the message, the UN Secretary-General has taken to the first-ever Global Sustainable Transport Conference, which opened  in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan on Saturday.

Daniel Dickinson reports

In his opening remarks to the conference, Mr Ban highlighted the "critical importance of sustainable transport," saying that it has to answer to the needs of those who have the least.

He said that sustainable transport "can bridge more than physical distances" and has the power to bring people together.

He added that it can play a crucial role in advancing development efforts.

But he warned that without action on transport, it will not be possible to limit increases in global temperatures to below two degrees Celsius, the threshold which was set by world leaders with the adoption of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change last December.

Limiting temperature rises is a key factor in advancing sustainable development.

The two-day conference in Turkmenistan has brought together representatives from the UN, governments, the private sector and civil society, with the common goal of setting new directions for global transport efforts.

Daniel Dickinson, United Nations

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