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16 October 2020

Guidance on the revised Clean Vehicles Directive


The revision of the Clean Vehicles Directive, which was adopted last year, aims to mobilise public procurement to accelerate the deployment of clean vehicles. The Directive sets national targets, defined as a minimum share of clean vehicles in the total number of vehicles procured in each Member State, but leaves full flexibility in how the effort is distributed within each Member State.

In order to help Member States and public authorities in the transposition and practical implementation of the Directive, the Commission intends to publish a guidance notice on the application of some of its provisions. In particular, the Notice – which is planned for adoption next week – will present a set of frequently asked questions (FAQs) clarifying specific aspects related to:

  • the scope of the Directive;
  • the definition of 'clean vehicles';
  • the minimum procurement targets;
  • the counting of the vehicles;
  • the use of the Tenders Electronic Daily (TED) database under different procurement scenarios (including e.g. retrofitted vehicles, replacement of vehicles in the framework of existing contracts, etc).

Member States are required to transpose the Directive into national legislation by 2 August 2021.


Further Information:

06 October 2020

Five ways we can systemically transform last-mile logistics


As consumers are ordering more online and expecting faster deliveries, the demand for last-mile delivery is soaring. However, cities are struggling with traffic congestion and air pollution due to the increasing number of delivery vehicles, the noise their engines produce, and second-lane parking. The public sector has launched various local initiatives to combat this problem, however, harmonised regulatory frameworks have yet to arrive.

There are 24 partners now exploring different business models for last-mile delivery within the recently announced EU initiative ULaaDS – Urban Logistics as an on-Demand Service, which aims to accelerate the deployment of innovative, shared, zero-emission logistics while addressing the impact of the on-demand economy. ULaaDS brings together city authorities, research institutions, industry and logistics stakeholders, associations, and networks.

David Fernández, a consultant with one of the organisations involved in ULaaDS proposes five business models, combining innovative tech, new schemes for horizontal collaboration, and policy measures and interventions as catalysts for systemic change in last-mile logistics.


For a detailed exploration of each suggested business model, you can read more here.

If you’d like to know more about the ULaaDS projects see:


Further information:

29 September 2020

COVID-19: Parliament approves temporary relief measures to support rail sector


Parliament backed on Thursday a regulation that will allow removing, postponing or lowering charges for accessing rail infrastructure during COVID-19 pandemic.

Parliament adopted the new rules under urgent procedure with 678 votes in favour, three against and five abstentions.
The temporary measures will help to mitigate the consequences of the crisis by introducing the possibility for Member States to authorise infrastructure managers to reduce, waive or defer the payment of the charges for accessing railway infrastructure, in accordance to the market segment. The rules cover also refunds by Member States to infrastructure managers and adjustment of the network statement, as well as mark-ups and reservation charges.The temporary rules cover the period from 1 March 2020 until 31 December 2020, with a possibility to extend the duration by Commission delegated acts.


Next steps


The amendments adopted by the Parliament correspond fully to the Council’s position. The Council will now have to formally adopt its first reading position. The regulation will enter into force the day after its publication in the Official Journal of the EU.


Further Information:

22 September 2020

Why cities must make more of their rivers


Paris is alive again after France’s national return to work week, la rentrée. Masks are obligatory but every else continues just as before the pandemic. Looking around you see busy streets and packed offices. The only empty part of the city is the river.

Most cities were originally built on rivers both as a water source - but also as a way to move people and goods around the expanding populated areas, for example, the Seine in Paris and the River Thames in London and a third of New York City’s surface area is water. What were once vibrant hubs for shipping, fishing, and play have been overwhelmed with toxic emissions and outputs from waste pipes - including sewage.

A new trend of converting waterways into play spaces may be about to change our view of rivers. The people of Copenhagen and Zurich can already enjoy a lunchtime dip in the river. In Los Angeles, there are plans to transform the LA river for parkland, cycle paths, and art projects.

Cities also need to reclaim the rivers as transport hubs. As post-COVID environmental concerns push cities to reclaim roads from cars and trucks they will need to shift traffic back to the river. This time using quiet and clean electric ferries, barges, and cargo ships.

This year has seen a record rise in digital shopping, with consultancy McKinsey saying: ‘US consumers report an intent to shop online even after the Covid-19 crisis.’ A new Thames barge could replace 44 large trucks and even without being electrically powered, uses less energy per ton. Delivery companies could then utilise electric cargo bikes for the last mile. Amsterdam has already implemented a similar scheme.

Original article first published 3 September 2020 by Simon Kuper

Further information:

08 September 2020

EUROPEAN MOBILITY WEEK 2020: promoting zero-emission mobility for all


Watch out for car-free streets, walking tours and interactive workshops as EUROPEANMOBILITYWEEK comes to towns and cities across Europe from 16-22 September. From this Wednesday, the clean and sustainable transport campaign will see thousands of towns and cities from over 40 countries hosting their own events, shining a spotlight on the importance of zero-emission mobility for all. This is the 19th year of EUROPEANMOBILITYWEEK and its well-known car-free day, when streets close for motorised traffic and open for pedestrians, cyclists, hoverboarders, e-scooter riders and more!

EU Transport Commissioner Adina Vălean said: “This year is a big challenge for our towns and cities. But the pandemic also showed us that people appreciate and expect our cities to become safer, cleaner and accessible to all. During this week and beyond, our partner cities from all around Europe will show how greener and more digital European towns and cities could look.”

In parallel, and in cooperation with EUROPEANMOBILITYWEEK, the European network of road traffic police forces (ROADPOL) is organising a new campaign for road safety – the ROADPOL Safety Days (previously ‘Project EDWARD’). As part of the campaign, national police forces will record the number of road deaths on 17 September, aiming for zero deaths on that day. Public events will highlight the role that every road-user can play in avoiding fatalities, as well as the importance of traffic police in enforcing the rules and working towards the EU’s ‘Vision Zero’ – zero road deaths and serious injuries on European roads by 2050.
Initiatives across Europe

EUROPEANMOBILITYWEEK provides an opportunity for local governments across Europe (and beyond) to enable residents to test out active mobility modes and discover the benefits of sustainable forms of transport.

This year, Essen (Germany) will launch the city’s first sidewalk extension (or parklet), and will organise workshops on road safety and sustainable mobility, examining for example how local businesses can become bicycle-friendly employers. In addition, the city will launch a new e-charging station, and will install smart lamp posts.

Lahti (Finland) will celebrate the week with guided walking tours, workshops and seminars on the importance of sustainable mobility. A clean-up day will be organised, where residents are encouraged to get together clear litter from public areas around the city.

Cesena (Italy) will use the week as an opportunity to seek feedback from local residents on their new sustainable urban mobility plan. In addition, the city will invite children to submit photographs and drawings, illustrating their experience of commuting in the city.

Girona (Spain) will hand out a free breakfast to reward those who cycle to work. In addition, the city will organise guided walking tours, workshops on bicycle safety and maintenance, an exhibition on electric and hybrid vehicles, and a film screening on sustainable mobility.

Gdańsk (Poland) is arranging bicycle trips to local monuments and attractions. During car-free day, residents owning a car will be able to access public transport for free.

This year, in light of the pandemic, towns and cities have maximum flexibility when participating. Local authorities can register their events and permanent infrastructure initiatives as usual, but also their online alternatives and their short-term measures to help people move around safely during the COVID-19 pandemic. Measures may include the temporary reallocation of road space to create pop-up bike lanes, or the introduction of speed restrictions.

Besides towns and cities, participation is warmly encouraged by others, including businesses, institutions, NGOs, schools and higher education institutions. All may register their MOBILITYACTION all year round.

Local authorities can apply for several awards in the context of the EUROPEANMOBILITYWEEK:

EU Urban Road Safety Award, rewarding local authorities for innovative measures to improve road safety. The call for applications is open from 29 September to 31 October 2020.
EUROPEANMOBILITYWEEK Awards for local authorities that make significant efforts to promote sustainable urban mobility during the campaign. The application period is from 29 September to 31 October 2020.
SUMP Award presented to local and regional authorities that have achieved excellence in sustainable urban mobility planning (SUMP). The deadline for applications is 31 October 2020


Further information:

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