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The attractiveness of car use

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Author: Bleijenberg, A.N.
Publisher: Springer
Place: Dordrecht
Source:Cars and carbon: Automobiles and European climate policy in a global context, 19-42
Identifier: 455446
doi: doi:10.1007/978-94-007-2123-4-2
ISBN: 9789400721234
Keywords: Traffic · Buildings and Infrastructure · Built Environment · Built Environment · BAI - Buildings and Infrastructure · Themalijn


Understanding the driving forces behind car use is necessary for the development of effective transport policies. The high door-to-door speed of the car in comparison with other travel modes forms its main attractiveness. And speed is the main engine for mobility growth, which is not easy to curb. Public transport and urban planning can only modestly influence the growth in car use. Urbanization creates short travel distances and is therefore a complementary way to achieve good accessibility. However, congestion remains an inevitable part of economically prosperous urban areas. Car growth in industriahzed countries will gradually decline to zero in the coming decades, because saturation levels will be reached, and aviation will probably take over the dominant role in passenger travel for the European population before 2050. Clean technology is the most promising route toward reducing the impact of car use on climate change. However, fuel effìcient cars and low carbon fuels will only conquer the roads if strict policy measures are taken