Sustainable Business Australia (SBA) has launched “Transporting the Future: A Business Perspective on Future Mobility” - a new report urging business to embrace its role, responsibility and opportunity for sustainable future.
The report, from the country’s peak business body for sustainable development, goes on to outline key steps for business managers and policy makers to work towards sustainable transport solutions.
SBA Chief Executive, Andrew Petersen, said business plays a key role in both delivering future mobility and ensuring that such a future is sustainable - both to its own business operations and society as a whole.
“Mobility is on the cusp of radical change. New technology and business models are combining to profoundly change how people and goods move about,” Mr. Petersen said.
“With this change comes an important opportunity to actively move to a more sustainable mobility future – one that is less congested, safer, faster, more equitable and de-carbonised. The report demonstrates how future mobility technology can significantly improve the lives and livelihoods of people”.
“A sustainable transport future for Australia is possible and requires a deliberative and ambitious shift from the status quo along a defined policy agenda. Autonomous vehicles, electric vehicles and shared mobility can reduce carbon emissions, other airborne particulates, congestion and road accidents and improve accessibility”.
“A key concern identified is that, without a considered policy direction, future mobility may also exacerbate existing social and environmental impacts”.
“A transport system dominated by private autonomous travel could increase journeys and vehicles on the road, which would result in Australia not realising the full potential this technology could offer. By contrast, a shared subscription service would effectively be private mobility on demand and this could significantly reduce congestion by having fewer vehicles on the road”.
“The report calls on business to determine whether it is both future proofed and able to take advantage of future mobility opportunities both through its business models and its operations including its assets, fleet, logistics, procurement, and its people”.
“It also calls on business and government to work together to demonstrate leadership in the transition to sustainable and zero emissions road transport”.
“But, as analysis in this report shows, Australian companies are currently either unfamiliar with their impact, let alone their dependence, on transportation systems and infrastructure to run their businesses – whether it is their employees, customers or supply chains. And even those businesses that acknowledge strategic importance struggle to identify approaches and tools to integrate mobility measurement, management and valuation within their organisations,” Mr. Petersen said.
NRMA’s Group CEO Rohan Lund said businesses needed to prepare for a historic wave that will reshape the local environment and disrupt how the economy functions.
“Changes in mobility will have far-reaching implications for our transport system, how we deliver goods and services, interact with customers, use energy and travel – we are witnessing a transformation of the mobility landscape”.
The report divides business’s role into three areas: Market disruption; Evolution of the workplace, customer journeys and how goods are moved around; and Collaboration with government and other business to catalyse business action, and ensure the right enabling environment to deliver solutions promoting a sustainable future mobility.
The report presents seven recommendations to enable and incentivise business to play that role as well as a series of best practice case studies to show concrete applications to inspire business leaders.
The report is based on research by SBA and is part of its three-year Sustainable Mobility Project (SMP). The project is chaired by NRMA and includes SBA Members, AGL, Downer, Energetics, Jacobs, and IAG. It is part of the World Business Council on Sustainable Development (WBCSD) global sustainable mobility project, which has been implemented in Asia, Europe and South America.