Time to take a different route

Kagermann, Scheuer
H. Kagermann, A. Scheuer, © BMVI/Ralf Brandt

Hardly anything is as important to people around the world as getting from one place to another. Nearly everyone on Earth uses some mode of transportation.

Thus, it should come as no surprise that, in September 2018, the German government set up an expert panel to devise new methods for staying on the move and to provide recommendations for redesigning the national transportation network. The NPM initiative is scheduled to run until the end of 2021, merging around 250 influential voices from the worlds of politics, business and civil society. Six workgroups discuss, free from technological bias, what policies would most likely create an environmentally, economically and socially sustainable path to a future-proof transportation system.

Led by Henning Kagermann, NPM picks up where NPE, a national electric transportation program that ran from 2010 to 2018, left off. In contrast to NPE, NPM pursues an integrated approach that considers not only the technological prerequisites but also the economic and social consequences of a changing transportation environment.

Besides traffic routing and climate action initiatives, smart vehicle systems, novel engine designs and alternative fuels, the project focuses on helping Germany retain its status as Europe’s most important vehicle market, secure jobs in the industry, bring the energy and transportation markets closer together and standardize electric components.

NPM’s vision is to establish a predominantly carbon-neutral and environmentally friendly transportation network, a safe and efficient, affordable and high-quality system that moves people and goods by air, land and sea. Still, the country also needs to stay competitive if its auto industry is to keep its cutting edge and continue to provide work for millions of people. The question, then, is not simply what mode of transportation people will choose.

read more in H2-international August 2020

Alexandra Huss
Nationale Plattform Zukunft der Mobilität, Berlin

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