Jean Pierre Loubinoux, Director General of International Union of Railways
SLoCaT: Can you briefly describe the initiative that is being launched at the Ascent Meeting in Abu Dhabi?
UIC is proposing targets for the rail sector at world level. These include energy efficiency, CO2 emissions and modal shift. The rail sector is working hard to improve its performance, to make the most of these improvements we must work with national governments and transport authorities to achieve modal shift to rail. The UIC low carbon rail challenge is designed to achieve these aims.
SLoCaT: What motivated your organisation and partner organizations to develop the initiative for the SG’s Climate Change meeting?
Sustainability is embedded at the heart of our business. Setting targets is a powerful way to inspire change, highlight the rail sectors strong performance and raise awareness of the need for modal shift. It is the rail sectors responsibility – as the backbone of sustainable transport systems – to provide solutions to climate change.
SLoCaT: What will be the impact of the SG’s personal engagement in climate change for your specific initiative?
We welcome the Secretary Generals personal engagement, it will focus attention on our initiative and introduce us to a new and wider audience. It shows our members that their work and commitment is recognised and appreciated on the world stage. Successful sustainable transport solutions need the support from a range of stakeholders, the SGs involvement is a real help for starting these conversations.
SLoCaT: Where is your personal inspiration coming from in the work you do on transport and climate change?
I am passionate about sustainability and passionate about transport. The risk that climate change presents to the world is now well know. We have the responsibility to act now and secure our future.
SLoCaT: Anything else that you would like to share on your initiative?
UIC have been monitoring and reporting the environmental performance of the European rail sector for almost a decade now. Our experience has been very positive. We are proud to report that at European level the rail sector is on course to achieve ambitious reductions in specific CO2 emissions for 2020 & 2030. The time has come to build on this success at world level.