Procedure : 2011/2096(INI)
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Document selected : A7-0425/2011

Texts tabled :

A7-0425/2011

Debates :

PV 14/12/2011 - 16
CRE 14/12/2011 - 16

Votes :

PV 15/12/2011 - 9.6
Explanations of votes
Explanations of votes

Texts adopted :


REPORT     
PDF 308kWORD 211k
29 November 2011
PE 469.845v02-00 A7-0425/2011

on the Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area – Towards a competitive and resource efficient transport system

(2011/2096(INI))

Committee on Transport and Tourism

Rapporteur: Mathieu Grosch

MOTION FOR A EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT RESOLUTION
 EXPLANATORY STATEMENT
 OPINION of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety
 OPINION of the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy
 OPINION of the Committee on Regional Development
 RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

MOTION FOR A EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT RESOLUTION

on the ‘Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area – Towards a competitive and resource efficient transport system’

(2011/2096(INI))

The European Parliament,

–   having regard to the Commission White Paper entitled ‘Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area – Towards a competitive and resource efficient transport system’ (COM(2011)0144),

–   having regard to its resolution of 12 February 2003 on the Commission White Paper ‘European transport policy for 2010: time to decide’(1),

–   having regard to its resolution of 12 July 2007 on ‘Keeping Europe moving – Sustainable mobility for our continent’(2),

–   having regard to its resolution of 6 July 2010 on a sustainable future for transport(3),

–   having regard to its resolution of 21 October 2010 on the Integrated Maritime Policy (IMP) – evaluation of progress made and new challenges(4),

–   having regard to its resolution of 5 July 2011 on the Commission's fifth Cohesion Report and the strategy for post-2013 cohesion policy(5),

–   having regard to its resolution of 6 July 2011 on aviation security, with a special focus on security scanners(6),

–   having regard to its resolution of 27 September 2011 on European road safety 2011-2020(7),

–   having regard to the Commission communications entitled ‘The Citizens’ Network’ (COM(1995)0601) and ‘Action Plan on Urban Mobility’ (COM(2009)0490),

–   having regard to the Commission's 1995 communication entitled ‘Towards fair and efficient pricing in transport’ (COM(95)0691), and to its 1998 communication entitled ‘Transport and CO2’ (COM(98)0204); whereas the Commission should now republish the latter communication,

–   having regard to the EU 2020 Strategy,

–   having regard to the Community acquis in the field of transport,

–   having regard to Rule 48 of its Rules of Procedure,

–   having regard to the report of the Committee on Transport and Tourism and the opinions of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety, the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy and the Committee on Regional Development (A7-0425/2011),

A.  whereas European transport policy directly affects EU citizens in many situations in daily life, and whereas a genuine Single European Transport Area eliminating all barriers between transport modes and national systems and free of distortions of competition and social dumping would benefit them considerably;

B.   whereas the transport sector is of major importance for the development of the European Union, its regions and its towns, as it accounts for some 5% of GDP and provides some 10 million jobs; whereas it is crucial to maintain the EU's capacity to develop and innovate in areas, such as mobility, transport and logistics, which are decisive for Europe’s position as an industrial and economic centre and its global competitive position; whereas small and medium-sized enterprises play a particularly important role in the transport sector;

C.  whereas the future European transport and mobility policy should integrate the 20-20-20 targets for the period to 2020 as a primary basis for decision-making in this field,

D.  whereas transport can make a significant contribution to the EU 2020 Strategy, particularly with regard to employment, sustainable economic growth, research, energy, innovation and the environment, bearing in mind that safety and environmental protection must be promoted more consistently and should be coordinated more closely;

E.   whereas certain goals of the last White Paper were not reached, and the goals set should therefore be regularly checked and assessed;

F.   whereas carriers should not be competitors, but should complement one another in a context of efficient co-modality, under the guiding principle of an efficient modal distribution of carriers;

G.  whereas the targets for modal transfers cannot be achieved by means of legislation, but only by exploiting a functioning infrastructure, intrinsic advantages and strengths and incentives;

H.  whereas it is essential to ensure the successful development of the Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T), effectively link the transport networks of all EU regions and eliminate disparities between the levels of infrastructure development in the EU Member States,

I.    whereas the transport sector and cross-border infrastructure continue to face many historical and geographical obstacles (different track gauges or impregnable barriers in the form of mountain ranges such as the Alps, the Pyrenees or the Carpathians) that produce ‘frontier effects’, which can often be easily remedied and should therefore be reduced;

J.    whereas differences among regions in Europe (peripheral situation, infrastructure, landscape, population density, socio-economic situation) give rise to widely differing problems which need flexible solutions;

K.  whereas the opening-up of transport markets should be made conditional on the development of all the regulatory safeguards needed to guarantee that it will result in better quality services, training and employment conditions;

L.   whereas the EU should set consistent standards for all carriers, with particular regard to safety, technology, environmental protection and working conditions, while taking into account the fact that, in sectors where global rules apply de facto, effective regulation can be achieved through the relevant international fora;

M.  whereas the legislation adopted in the field of transport must be correctly, consistently and rapidly transposed, implemented and enforced;

1.   Welcomes the 2011 White Paper, but notes that major goals of the 2001 White Paper were achieved either only in part or not at all, and proposes:

–   that, by 2013, the Commission should make specific proposals, based on the report on European road safety 2011-2020 and in keeping with the principle of subsidiarity, to reduce the number of deaths and severe injuries on the roads by 50% by 2020 in relation to 2010. These proposals should pay special attention to the most vulnerable road users and indicate, in each case, the results expected in terms of accident reduction;

–   that, by 2014, the Commission should submit a proposal to provide for the internalisation of the external costs of all modes of freight and passenger transport in accordance with their specific nature, whilst avoiding double charging and market distortions. The revenue from this internalisation of external costs should be used to fund investment in safety, research, new technologies, climate protection and noise reduction in the context of sustainable mobility and in infrastructure;

2.   Calls on the Commission to put forward, by 2013, a proposal on social and working conditions in order to facilitate the creation of a genuinely integrated European transport market and, at the same time, enhance the attractiveness of the sector for workers; this proposal should be based on an in-depth analysis of the current situation with regard to social and working conditions in all transport modes and the degree of harmonisation between the laws of the Member States, and on an assessment of the impact of developments on the transport labour market over the period to 2020; this proposal should increase employment and improve the situation of workers throughout the transport sector and take account of new technologies and logistical services which can be used to improve transport services in general and for disabled people in particular;

3.   Asks the Commission to submit, by 2013, on the basis of the information provided by the Member States, a coherent, quantitative analysis of the current situation with regard to the level of infrastructure, the density of the transport network and the quality of transport services in all EU Member States; this will provide an overview of the current situation in the EU27, highlight inequalities in the development of transport infrastructure between the Member States and their regions and outline the way transport infrastructure across all modes is currently funded and future investment priorities;

4.   Is aware of the major contribution made by the transport sector to industrial policy, competitiveness and the EU’s trade balance; notes that in 2009 exports of machinery and equipment in the transport sector totalled EUR 454.7 billion, accounting for 41.5% of all exports from the EU27; notes, further, that in 2009 the EU registered its biggest trade surpluses in the areas of machinery and equipment in the transport sector (EUR 112.6 billion) and transport services (EUR 21.5 billion);

5.   Approves the 10 goals for a competitive and resource-efficient transport system and the targets set in the White Paper for 2050 and 2030, but considers that more specific provisions are required for the period to 2020 with regard to funding – in view of the economic situation of individual Member States – and the general challenges facing transport in the field of energy and the environment, and therefore calls on the Commission to draw up legal rules to achieve a 20% reduction in emissions of CO2 and other GHGs from transport (by comparison with 1990 reference figures) and the following intermediate goals by 2020 (by comparison with 2010 reference figures), in accordance with the 20-20-20 targets and in cooperation with international partners:

–  a 20% reduction in CO2 emissions from road transport,

–  a 20% reduction in noise and energy consumption for rail transport,

–  a 30% reduction in CO2 emissions from air transport across European airspace,

–  an EU-wide uniform 30% reduction in emissions of CO2 and pollutants in shipping, to which the IMO agreements on the Energy Efficiency Design Index and the Ship Energy Efficiency Management Plan will make a contribution;

and calls for all the goals referred to in this paragraph to be considered priorities, which should therefore be checked every year;

6.  Stresses that the aim should be to complete the European internal transport market by further opening-up transport networks and markets, taking into account economic, employment, environmental, social and territorial aspects, and calls on the Commission to ensure that proposals on the opening-up of services in all transport markets do not lead to social dumping, poorer-quality services, monopolies or oligopolies; stresses that guidelines on state aid for seaports are still urgently needed;

7.   Highlights the as yet insufficiently explored potential of transport in many areas, and insists on the importance of a single European transport area, with interconnection and interoperability, based on genuinely European management of transport infrastructure and systems achieved by eliminating 'border-effects' between Member States in all transport modes, in order to enhance the competitiveness and attractiveness of the entire European Union; stresses the importance of territorial cohesion and, in particular, the accessibility problems facing the outermost regions, islands, landlocked and peripheral regions and good connections between Member States and their neighbouring countries;

8.   Stresses that efficient co-modality in passenger mobility and goods transport throughout the entire chain of transport and logistics services – measured in terms of economic efficiency, environmental protection, energy security, social, health and employment conditions, safety and security, and taking account of territorial cohesion and the geographical environment in individual countries and regions – should be the guiding idea for future transport policy; takes the view that transport modes must complement one another and interact and that the parameters outlined above should be used to determine the current and future modal distribution in countries and regions, according to their individual possibilities; considers, further, that use of sustainable means of transport should be systematically promoted, also for short and medium distances;

9.   Notes the Union's high degree of dependence on imported fossil fuels, whose supply from outside the Union entails significant risks in terms of the Union’s economic security and in terms of the flexibility of its external policy options, and calls on the Commission to define and regularly measure the Union’s security of external energy supply ;

10.  Highlights the importance of developing the transport infrastructure of new Member States, including the road infrastructure, in order to establish a single European transport area and of connecting their transport networks with those of neighbouring states; calls on the Commission to include the transport infrastructure development needs of new Member States in its future multiannual financial framework, so that, by 2025, the transport infrastructure of the new Member States reaches the level of the other Member States;

11. Welcomes and supports the Commission's proposal on the 'Connecting Europe Facility' and the Project Bonds Initiative, and calls on the Member States to implement the core network, since the TEN-T concept should provide for a limited number of sustainable projects with European added value and with greater and realistic funding; urges that:

–   Member States commit themselves to eliminating the main known bottlenecks in every transport mode in the European transport area by 2020 and, if necessary, encourage their circumvention by establishing an intermodal infrastructure at the start and end points of a stretch, to prioritise cross-border projects between all the Member States, without neglecting connections to neighbouring countries, and to submit an approved funding plan by 2015;

–   the Commission commits itself to increasing the stability of funding of TEN-T projects, in coordination with regional policy;

–   the Commission commits itself to supporting alternative funding models and instruments, including project bonds, and to providing for increased use of that revenue to fund TEN-T projects when making proposals to internalise external costs;

–   in order to ensure the long-term effectiveness and visibility of EU action in the framework of TEN-T, the definition of priorities must be seen in close connection with the conditions governing the use of regional structural funds and the Member States must be required to guarantee funding for these projects beyond the end of the EU's multiannual programmes;

–   project priorities should only be maintained after 2015 if Member States have taken binding budget decisions to ensure the implementation of the projects and that EU co-funding should be based on the ‘use it or lose it’ principle;

–   EuroVelo, the European long-distance cycle route network, should be included in the TEN-T network;

12. Stresses that establishing good transport infrastructure and good levels of access to it will make all regions economically stronger and more attractive to direct investment, thereby enhancing both their own competitiveness and the competitive position of the EU as a whole in the longer term and ensuring that the internal market develops properly and the goal of territorial cohesion is achieved;

13. Points out that transport networks play a leading role in spatial planning policies; stresses the particular importance of major transport infrastructure, such as high-speed railways, in boosting local development; considers that the macro-regions and the strategies for their development have the potential to play a more active role in the implementation of a coordinated, effective and sustainable transport policy; recalls the importance of drawing up, planning and implementing joint transport infrastructure strategies, as well as the need to disseminate best practices in the field of transport; stresses that EU citizens and enterprises will be direct beneficiaries of a single European transport area which has as its goals a reduction in the time and resources taken up by freight and passenger transport and closer integration of the markets;

14.     Notes that the same risk-appropriate security standards, harmonised at European level, should apply to all forms of passenger and goods transport, and calls for a proposal to fund compliance with this requirement; takes the view that, in the case of maritime and air transport, international coordination should be a prerequisite, and that existing rules should be reviewed and, if necessary, revised by 2015 and progressively integrated into agreements with third countries;

15.     Stresses the importance of a coherent strategy for making the transition to alternative and renewable energies for transport, and highlights the fact that the goals set could be achieved using an energy mix and existing methods for saving energy; points out that this transition requires specific infrastructure and corresponding incentives and that the reduction goals should be formulated in a technology-neutral manner;

16. Requests, by 2015, a proposal on urban mobility in which, in keeping with the principle of subsidiarity, support for projects is made conditional on the submission by local authorities of sustainable mobility plans for efficient passenger and goods logistics chains in urban and built-up areas which contribute to a reduction in traffic volumes, accidents, atmospheric pollution and noise, comply with the standards and targets of European transport policy, fit in with the needs of surrounding towns and regions and do not create new market barriers; proposes an exchange of best practices in the area of innovation and research into sustainable concepts for urban mobility;

17. Stresses that the behaviour of transport users is decisive, and calls for the creation

of incentives to choose sustainable physically active, safe and healthy means of transport and mobility; calls on the Commission and the Member States, in keeping with the principle of subsidiarity, to submit by 2013 proposals to develop initiatives that promote environmentally friendly public transport, walking and cycling, especially in towns and cities, with the aim of doubling their number of users; considers it important, therefore, to develop safe infrastructure for pedestrians and cyclists, especially in towns and cities, and to improve interoperability between transport services, to promote the introduction of a single transport document and an integrated e-ticket system for multi-modal travel which also links long-distance and local transport; recalls that accessibility and affordability of transport is crucial for social mobility and that greater attention should be paid to reconciling sustainability aims with social needs when planning the transport policies of the future;

18. Believes that the basic rules on passengers' rights should be laid down in a Charter of Passengers' Rights covering all forms of transport, and therefore expects the Commission to put forward, at the latest at the beginning of 2012, a corresponding proposal which takes account of both the specific characteristics of each transport mode and past experience and contains a chapter on the rights of passengers with disabilities; calls, at the same time, for uniform interpretation and consistent application, implementation and enforcement of these rights, on the basis of clear definitions and guidelines, and transparency regarding their management; stresses, further, the need for legislation in the area of add-on charges across all modes of transport;

19.  Stresses the need for an integrated transport policy for the entire value chain of transport and logistics, in order to address properly the challenges of transport and mobility, in particular those which arise in urban areas; calls for enhanced coordination among policy-makers in the European institutions and for permanent dialogue and consultation with the logistics industry, transport-service suppliers and customers in a European logistics and mobility forum;

20. Calls for priority to be given to promoting green logistics and improved mobility management;

21. Asserts that sustainable multi-modality for passengers and goods logistics calls for the provision of intermodal connection points and terminals, integrated planning and logistics and integrated education and vocational training;

22.  Stresses that the EU must remain at the forefront of technological innovation in order to promote efficiency, sustainability and employment; calls for funding to be provided for a research and development programme which is specifically aimed at sustainable and safe mobility, with a specific implementation strategy, a timeline and efficient financial control, with the aim of:

–  maintaining the EU's leadership as a production and research centre for all forms of transport, with special focus on the decarbonisation of transport, lower emissions, noise reduction, safety and security;

–  creating efficient, intelligent, interoperable and linked systems to support SESAR, Galileo, GMES, ERTMS, River Information Services, SafeSeaNet, LRIT und ITS;

–   finding practice-oriented solutions with the participation of a group of experts from the fields of economics, science, politics and society;

–   continuing the e-safety initiative to improve road safety and establish the infrastructure needed to introduce the e-call emergency call system, whilst observing data protection rules;

23. Considers that bureaucratic hurdles should be reduced for all forms of transport and calls, therefore, for greater simplification and harmonisation of transport and logistics documents, particularly for goods transport and for the submission, by 2013, of a proposal on the standardisation of freight and e-documents, also with a view to promoting multimodal freight;

24. Stresses the need to improve and standardise control devices, such as speed cameras, on-board units and communications systems and media, and calls for the submission, by 2013, of a proposal concerning the mutual recognition and interoperability of such devices; stresses the need to enhance coordination and cooperation between national authorities in cross-border prosecutions and to ensure greater convergence in the application of road safety standards;

25.  Highlights the fact that possible changes to, and the standardisation of, loading units, taking into account the loading units used in global transport and the dimensions of transport vehicles, must serve to optimise multi-modal transport and offer demonstrable benefits in the form of fuel savings, lower emissions and improved road safety;

26. Proposes that the Commission only authorise the use of the European Modular System on certain routes at the request of a Member State when the existing infrastructure and safety requirements allow it;

27. Emphasises the importance of the various European transport agencies, and calls for fresh efforts to strengthen their European dimension;

28. Calls on Member States to support and work towards the establishment of a level playing field between all modes of transport in terms of energy taxation and value added tax (VAT);

29. Calls, with regard to road transport, for:

–   another review, by 2013, of the regulatory framework governing driving and rest periods in passenger and goods transport and its implementation, and to harmonise interpretation of the implementation and enforcement, and taking account of the European Parliament’s position on the harmonisation of penalties in the road transport sector; believes that it is also necessary to harmonise the restrictions on goods shipments throughout the European Union;

–   the targets already set to be met and for fresh impetus to be given to the priority projects in the Trans-European Road Network;

–   an overall 40% increase by 2020, as compared with 2010 figures, in the number of secure parking spaces for heavy goods vehicles on the Trans-European Road Network (TERN) and improvements in their quality (hygiene standards),

–   the Commission to support Member State initiatives to create a safe and environmentally-friendly fleet by means of tax incentives;

–   the Commission to draw up, by the end of 2013, a report on the state of the Community road transport market which contains an analysis of the market situation, including an evaluation of the effectiveness of controls and the evolution of employment conditions in the profession, and an assessment of whether harmonisation of the rules in the fields, inter alia, of enforcement and road-user charges, as well as social and safety legislation, has progressed to such an extent that the further opening-up of domestic road transport markets, including the elimination of the restriction on cabotage, could be envisaged;

–   an improvement in the initial and further training of persons employed in the transport sector, including those providing transport-related services for passengers, and in access to the professions concerned, in order to improve working conditions and salaries and to boost the attractiveness of these professions;

–   a standardised EU methodology to calculate the carbon footprint of transport and logistics operations, in order to avoid a proliferation of national approaches, and support for industry initiatives to promote carbon footprint calculation, especially for road freight transport;

30. Calls, with regard to shipping, for:

–   a proposal to be put forward by 2013 on the 'Blue Belt', to facilitate the formalities for ships operating between EU ports and to develop the potential of motorways of the sea by establishing a genuine single market for intra-EU maritime transport in accordance with existing environmental and nature conservation legislation;

–   initiatives to ensure that the reduction of sulphur emissions from ships does not result in a backward modal shift;

–   the introduction of a European policy for short and medium sea shipping, in order to use the spare capacity available on inland waterways and to achieve the EU objectives for reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the transport sector;

–   continuing support for the NAIADES programme, in accordance with existing environmental and nature conservation legislation, with a follow-up programme to ensure the continuation of the current NAIADES programme as from 2014,

–   a proposal on a 20% increase in the number of multi-modal connections (platforms) for inland waterways, inland ports and rail transport by 2020, as compared with 2010 figures, and corresponding financial support, as well as the extension beyond 2013 of the Marco Polo programme, in order to make efficient use of the potential of shipping,

–   under the next multiannual financial framework for the period 2014-2020, the allocation of at least 15% of TEN-T funding to projects that improve sustainable and multimodal connections between seaports, inland ports and multimodal platforms, with an emphasis on waterborne transport projects;

–   in view of the international nature of maritime transport, the harmonisation of training in the shipping sector in accordance with an international standard by 2012, and, in particular, the rapid adoption of the Commission's proposal amending Directive 2008/106/EC on the minimum level of training of seafarers in order to incorporate into EU law the 2010 amendments to the Convention on Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers, the submission of a proposal on the mutual recognition of framework conditions on training for port workers before the end of 2013, and the drafting of a strategy for recruiting junior staff to maritime professions;

31.  Calls, with regard to air transport, for:

–  the Commission and the Member States to promote the implementation of the Single European Sky II, for which the deployment of SESAR will play an important role, and calls on the Commission to put forward by 2013 a proposal on the completion of a single European airspace through a reduction in the number of functional airspace blocks,

–   the Commission to strengthen coordination between the Single Sky Regulations and the SESAR and Galileo projects and the Clean Sky initiatives, in order to implement energy-saving and GHG emissions-reduction measures more effectively,

–  service quality, and coordination with international standards, to be prioritised in

further proposals on market liberalisation,

–  the Commission and the Member States to take all the steps required to ensure that European trading in emissions certificates is internationally accepted by 2012, thereby guaranteeing a level playing field internationally;

–   active work on the development of a ‘Checkpoint of the Future’ for security checks of passengers and freight;

32. Calls, with regard to rail transport, for:

–  the Commission to take Member States’ commitments in relation to local public

transport and existing service levels into account when proposing further opening-up of the markets, with the aim of improving current service levels whilst guaranteeing fairer competition and preventing social dumping,

–  greater promotion of technical harmonisation and interoperability between the Member States, and in particular harmonisation of the rules on the authorisation of vehicles by 2015, so that authorisation takes no longer than two months under financially transparent conditions, and relevant changes to the competences of the European Railway Agency and its funding in 2012,

–  lending fresh impetus, in a properly thought out way, to railway infrastructure, noise reduction and the ERTMS action plan over the period to 2020,

–  the Commission to submit, no later than on 31 December 2012, a proposal for a directive containing provisions on the relationship between infrastructure management and transport operations and a proposal for opening-up the domestic rail passenger market which does not detract from the quality of rail transport services and safeguards public service obligations,

–  the independence and a strengthening of the powers of national regulatory authorities, in the interests of more efficient railways, closer cooperation between them in a European network and the submission, by 2014, of a Commission proposal to further support this goal and establish a European regulatory authority;

–  greater consideration to be given to education and further training based on high standards and to the promotion of cross-border recognition of diplomas and qualifications;

33. Recognises that Europe’s railway industry is increasingly vulnerable to competition on the EU market from third-country suppliers; expresses concern at the substantial barriers preventing EU suppliers from bidding for public contracts in non-EU countries;

34. Calls on the Commission to identify, quantify and evaluate, in the impact studies of the legislative proposals, the scope for creating ‘ecological employment’ and the measures to promote it;

35. Calls on the Commission and the Member States to present a joint strategy involving information, communication and consultation of the players involved, including, in particular, participation by the citizens concerned, on the needs, planning, development and financing of the infrastructure required for growth, mobility, development and employment, in accordance with commitments made as part of the Europe 2020 strategy;

36. Taking into account the fact that the local and regional bodies have significant competences in the area of transport policy, regards it as essential that they should be able to participate through a multi-level governance approach;

37. Calls on the Commission to assess annually the goals of the White Paper, the progress made, and the results, and to report to Parliament every five years on the implementation of the White Paper;

38. Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council and the Commission.

(1)

OJ C 43 E, 19.2.2004, p. 250-259.

(2)

OJ C 175 E, 10.7.2008, p. 556-561.

(3)

Texts adopted, P7_TA(2010)0260.

(4)

Texts adopted, P7_TA(2011)0386.

(5)

Texts adopted, P7_TA(2011)0316.

(6)

Texts adopted, P7_TA(2011)0329.

(7)

Texts adopted, P7_TA(2011)0408.


EXPLANATORY STATEMENT

Transport is very important for EU citizens because it defines mobility. EU citizens are the beneficiaries of the European transport area, as it helps them to be mobile in all situations in daily life, allowing them to benefit from their right to free movement across Europe for professional and private purposes. On average, 13.2% of the budget of private households is spent on transport goods and services. Furthermore, passenger and goods transport provides jobs for many Europeans and serves the completion of the European internal market, as it accounts for some 5% of EU wealth (in terms of GDP) and employs over 10 million Europeans.

Transport is an important factor for towns and regions, as it not only connects towns and regions but also contributes to the EU's status as a research and innovation centre and is therefore an important factor for the development of the EU and its regions, with immediate influence on the social cohesion of the regions. The creation of a Single European Transport Area as a goal of the future European transport policy is thus directly linked to regional, environmental, economic, social, and employment policy. Owing to this link, the transport sector can make a significant contribution to the EU 2020 Strategy.

I am amazed that the Member States underestimate the European added value of transport policy and obstruct it by implementing directives incorrectly or late. I am also surprised that, in these times of economic crisis, there are not more initiatives for investment to accelerate the development of TEN-Ts, as they constitute sustainable infrastructure which creates jobs and stimulates the economy.

1. Coherent and specific goals for 2020

The aim of this 2011 White Paper should be to determine coherent and efficient goals, whilst learning from the mistakes of the past. The past has shown that, whilst the transport sector has partly created better working conditions and the market has continued to be liberalised in the road transport sector, for example, many of the goals laid down in the 2001 White Paper have not been reached. Whether this is due to the Member States’ lack of willingness to define ambitious goals, to implementation, to checks or to entirely different factors, is open to debate. What is important is that we should avoid such a situation in future. Firstly, we should do this by not setting new, arbitrary goals, but by reviewing the old goals and either keeping them, abandoning them or redefining them. Two of the goals which should be retained are the 50% reduction in the number of deaths and severe injuries on the road and the internalisation of the external costs of all forms of transport. Furthermore, these goals should now be reviewed regularly, and not merely as part of the mid-term review.

Furthermore, it is also important to determine the date by which these goals should be reached, allowing progress to be assessed. The goals laid down in the new White Paper mainly refer to the period until 2050 and/or 2030. I approve these long-term goals, but would stress that it cannot be foreseen how fast innovation, technology and the economic situation of Member States will develop until then, and which new challenges European transport policy will have to face by 2050. This is why I would propose specific goals for 2020 for all carriers which concord with other areas of policy, and call for goals to be reviewed annually.

2. EU standards for a Single European Transport Area

In order for the internal transport market to be completed, certain basic preconditions should be laid down. This would tackle existing challenges and aim towards a harmonisation of rules applying to transport. Furthermore, this would reduce frontier effects, which are frequently easy to abolish.

a) Safety

Safety is one of the most important pillars of European transport policy, and compliance with safety rules is an important pre-condition for the creation of a single European transport area.

For road traffic, the ‘zero vision’ is a long-term goal, and the goal of a 50% reduction by 2020 in the number of deaths and severe injuries on the roads should be maintained. The measures laid down in the Report on European road safety 2011-2020 should be taken up by the Commission and included in its proposals.

However, safety standards should be applicable Europe-wide to all other carriers, and not just to road transport. For air and sea transport in particular, owing to their international nature, these standards should also be coordinated with global standards. Furthermore, clear standards should be laid down on funding for safety requirements.

Safe passenger and goods transport chains are indispensible. The goal here is ‘one-stop security’, which allows for a single safety check for passengers and goods, even on international journeys. I would stress that fair information is of great importance in this context. Particularly with regard to the technical requirements for safety measures, the Commission should work closely together with Parliament and ensure that information is correct and that the feasibility of these measures is coordinated with Member States so that realistic standards can be set and implemented on time.

b) Energy and the environment

The current challenges of European transport policy also concern environmental and energy problems. European standards which are laid down should promote a single European transport area.

The de-carbonisation of transport continues to be an important political goal. Clear standards should be set for all carriers, and relevant incentives should be created to ensure that all forms of transport increase their sustainability. The assessment of the sustainability of forms of transport should be based on objective criteria which include not only their use, but also their entire 'footprint', from creation and required infrastructure to disposal.

The internalisation of external costs could make a major contribution to the sustainability of carriers by reducing exhaust gases and bottlenecks, but only if the internalisation of external costs applies to all carriers and revenue is re-invested in the sustainability of mobility, transport and infrastructure. The provisions on the Eurovignette, including the requirement that 15% of revenue must be re-invested, and the provisions on the European Emissions Trading System (ETS) for air transport were steps in the right direction. However, they are not ambitious enough, particularly since the Eurovignette Directive is not even mandatory.

Given that transport is dependent on oil, alternative and renewable energies should gain ever greater importance. However, it should be noted that the European Parliament should be technology-neutral, as each source of alternative energy has specific characteristics and bears certain advantages and disadvantages. Whether electric or hydrogen-powered vehicles, biofuels, synthetic fuels, LPG or biogas are used or can be used depends on the form of transport and Member States themselves. In my opinion, only a mix of energy sources can provide realistic and sustainable solutions. However, all carriers should pay greater attention to energy saving solutions which are available today, such as driving style, supported by relevant initial and further training, the speedy creation of functional air space blocks, landing and take-off options and mobility plans which give greater space to buses, trams, etc. Energy saving can provide significant results even today.

When considering alternative energy sources, we should not forget the issue of creating the necessary infrastructure. That is why it is particularly important to create incentives to develop the relevant infrastructure. Sustainable solutions will not become reality if they are prohibitively expensive for normal consumers and the necessary infrastructure is lacking. Coherence between the standards laid down under different areas of policy is particularly important. In order to achieve harmonisation, standards on energy and environmental protection should follow the guidelines of European transport policy, and vice versa.

c) Employment and social conditions

The harmonisation of working and social conditions for employees in the transport sector is an important condition ensuring the proper functioning of the European internal transport market.

The harmonisation of initial and further training, job access and working conditions for all carriers will, in the long term, lead to a harmonisation of salaries and prevent social dumping and distortions to competition. The mutual recognition of initial and further training plays a decisive role in this respect. For sea transport, regard should be had to international coordination.

Commission proposals on issues such as the liberalisation of port services and ground handling services, and any other market liberalisation, should also promote the harmonisation of employment and social rules, and focus on service quality.

With regard to road transport, the rules on driving and rest times should again be reviewed, and strict controls which take specific circumstances into account should be made possible. Parking spaces for heavy goods vehicles should be made safer, and their number should be increased Europe-wide in order to allow professional heavy goods vehicle drivers to comply with the rules on rest times. There should be greater harmonisation of the implementation of the directive in the Member States, the number of checks, and enforcement.

For all forms of transport, quality of training should be seen as the basis for ensuring safety both for employees and transport users.

d) Administrative simplification

On Member State borders in particular, carriers come across obstacles which could in many cases be removed simply. These ‘frontier effects’ are particularly common in border areas. There are often bilateral agreements between states to solve specific problems, but European rules are needed in such cases also. For example, there are 6 000 different rules in the EU on the registration of railway vehicles, and the approval of such vehicles can take years. These rules, whose rationale is often protectionism, prevent European railway undertakings from offering their services in other countries, and should therefore be reduced. The situation is untenable. I therefore suggest that the rules on railway vehicle registration should be harmonised, and that the length of the registration procedure should be brought down to two months. In order to effectively combat frontier effects, the European Railway Agency also needs the requisite competences.

Control devices also need to be standardised across the EU. It is not right that police cannot use control devices on the border with a neighbouring country as they have not been calibrated in that country. An inventory is therefore necessary in this field, followed by a Commission proposal on standardisation.

The harmonisation of transport documents would make all forms of transport more efficient. E-freight in particular would considerably reduce administrative obstacles and accelerate transport.

e) Global factor

As a precursor, the EU should enforce the rules on safety, environmental protection, energy and technology at global level. However, that will only be possible if an agreement on harmonisation and standardisation across the 27 Member States is reached and then successfully implemented. Only if Europe speaks with a single voice can it defend its rules. This is a problem even today, as shown by the following examples. ETS, which is due to be introduced in 2012, shows how strong international opposition is. The slow progress of ERMTS use also shows how hesitant Member States are. Finally, the aviation agreement with the USA, which contains insufficient provisions on the harmonisation of rules, mutual recognition and technical support, is a good example of the challenges which the EU must overcome at international level.

3. Efficient co-modality as the guiding idea for future European transport policy

The European transport area will have to face severe capacity problems for goods and passenger transport. Between 2005 and 2030, it is projected that goods transport will rise by some 40% and passenger transport by some 34%. This shows how urgently we need European solutions. These solutions can be found in the concept of efficient co-modality. In my opinion, given the capacity problems, carriers should not compete but complement each other in the framework of efficient co-modality. This pays equal attention to economic, environmental, social, and safety aspects and assesses efficiency, taking into account the different initial situation of forms of transport, geographic conditions and transport and mobility developments in each region. This should be made the guiding idea of future transport policy, instead of keeping to the 300 km threshold for the entire European transport area, as proposed by the Commission. The Commission plans that 30% of road freight over distances greater than 300 km should shift to other carriers such as rail transport or shipping by 2030. This should not be retained, but a certain distance threshold could be used as a guideline, provided that the Member States and regions determine this threshold in line with their current and future capacity.

Co-modality is also improved if loading units are adapted and no volume is lost when reloading from one form of transport to another. This requires a harmonisation of loading units and a corresponding change to the dimensions of vehicles.

4. TEN-Ts and funding

TEN-Ts are of great importance to European transport policy, and their efficiency and feasibility should therefore be increased. This can be done by limiting the number of projects and providing increased funding. A modest core network with guaranteed funding, to be assessed in line with sustainable development criteria at European and regional level, will promote progress especially in those areas where it is currently slow (particularly in border areas). After priority projects have been defined, I think that their priority status should only be maintained if Member States issue binding decisions which significantly promote the completion of the projects. This is the only way of ensuring that the core network is completed as fast as possible and of preventing the continuing existence of projects which have little chance of being completed.

Frequently, no progress is made on projects because there is no funding. I would therefore call for Member States to submit a funding concept by 2015 to eliminate 25 known bottlenecks.

Furthermore, the definition of priorities should be seen in close connection with the conditions for using regional structural funds, and the Member States should be obliged to guarantee funding for these projects beyond the end of the EU's multi-annual programmes.

I also consider that the Commission should directly fund these projects at a rate of at least 30% of total investments, and that it should support alternative funding models and instruments and project bonds. These can be implemented in close cooperation with European financial institutions. The Marguerite Fund is a good example for this. An alternative funding instrument could be created in connection with the internalisation of external costs if the revenue were increasingly used to fund TEN-T projects. This would also create an incentive for public-private partnerships. A secure flow of money would provide planning dependability and thus make investments in TEN-T projects more attractive for private businesses.

5. Urban mobility

There is an acute need to take action in towns, as the population in conurbations is increasing, which will lead to increasing traffic, noise and air pollution.

In order to address these problems, towns should establish sustainable mobility plans, and financial support for projects should be made dependent upon the submission of such plans. Under the principle of subsidiarity, towns will, of course, decide themselves what urban projects to plan, but these projects will have to comply with the standards of European transport policy, meaning that they will have to provide for efficient multi-modal passenger and goods logistics chains which reduce not only traffic in towns but also environmental impact. For this reason, mobility plans will also have to provide for increased infrastructure for pedestrians and cyclists and lead to the doubling of the number of public transport users. Bus and tram transport in particular can significantly contribute to efficient co-modality in urban, suburban and regional transport, provided that the requisite infrastructure is adapted or made available.

Furthermore, attention should be paid to the issue of coherence between the mobility plans of individual towns and regions, ensuring that they are coordinated with those of neighbouring towns and regions, even those located in other Member States.

In towns and their surrounding area, a safe, attractive and reliable transport system is required, where carriers are coordinated and multi-modal travel is possible. The price of tickets, the existence of e-tickets which can be booked online, and passenger rights are also important, since they have an influence on the choice of carrier.

6. Research and innovation

Research and innovation are particularly important in the transport sector, as the transport systems they develop reduce environmental impact, increase safety, and can also ensure a continuous flow of traffic. They also promote the EU’s status as a centre for production and research.

I therefore call for a research and development programme which is specifically aimed at mobility to be established and financially supported in order to create intelligent, interoperational and linked systems for transport guidance for all forms of transport, such as SESAR, Galileo, ERTMS, PIDS, SafeSeaNet and ITS.


OPINION of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (15.11.2011)

for the Committee on Transport and Tourism

on a Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area - Towards a competitive and resource efficient transport system

(2011/2096(INI))

Rapporteur: Bogusław Sonik

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety calls on the Committee on Transport and Tourism, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.   Welcomes the Commission Roadmap for moving toward a competitive low-carbon economy in 2050 including the 60 % GHG reduction target for the sector by 2050;

2.   Points out that a sustainable and environmentally friendly transport network is the nervous system of the European economy, which should provide the necessary initiatives and should receive proper legislative and/or financial incentives, so as to make possible a transition to non-fossil fuel propulsion;

3.   Calls for the introduction of binding GHG reduction target for the transport sector by 2050;

4.   Calls on the Commission to report on cost-efficient action to reduce black carbon emissions from transport and to come forward with proposals with quick climate mitigation effects and additional health co-benefits;

5.   Is aware that CO2 emissions, as well as emissions of CO, NOx, VOC and SO4 and brake and tyre wear particles, have a strong influence on air quality, first and foremost in urban areas, and hence on human health in the form of lung diseases and different forms of cancer;

6.  Takes the view that, owing to the oil dependence of transport, alternative and renewable energies are becoming more important, but that there must be considerably more investment in the appropriate infrastructure; stresses, however, that agrofuels can only play a part in sustainable transport if the sector becomes much more efficient and reduces the overall need for fuel, and that the sustainability criteria are complemented with greenhouse gases accounting for indirect land use change resulting from displacement; notes, however, that we could already save energy and fuel today by eco-driving and that fuel-saving techniques should also be developed and promoted in other modes – continuous descent for aircraft, for example;

7.   Takes note of the fact that in the recent past improvements in emissions from fossil-fuel-propelled means of transport have always been offset by higher demand, resulting in congestion and in air pollution that still exceeds the legal limits; insists, therefore, on the need for a switch to a different technology or to the best possible fossil fuel technology, and supports in consequence research carried out with or without the financial support of the EU that seeks to accelerate the introduction of eco-innovations and new technologies in transport;

8.   Underlines the fact that subsidies for greening the urban transport sector would benefit employment if invested in public transport;

9.   Insists that, where these incentives do not work on a market basis, the Commission and Member States should have the courage to intervene and ensure the ‘polluter pays’ principle is implemented;

10.  Notes the fact that several regions in the EU with unmet transport needs still have to ‘catch up’ and will still show a large growth in transport once the infrastructure has been finalised and the economy is picking up; considers for this reason that it is also important to focus future actions on the elimination of disparities in infrastructure development between certain European regions/countries, to address this issue in the framework of social impact assessments; and to apply EU regional policy to that end; calls on the Commission to mobilise EU financing instruments under the terms of a comprehensive financing strategy which brings together both EU funds and public and private national funds;

11. Stresses the importance of improved cooperation between different transport operators with a view to ensuring greater interoperability and, consequently, better conditions and connections for travellers, especially between rural and urban areas;

12.  Recalls that, particularly in Member States with a large surface area, distances may be very long and population sparse; calls on the Commission, in the European transport system, also to take account of the transport needs of peripheral and sparsely populated regions;

13.  Recommends that appropriate measures aimed at delivering sustainable transport be considered, in line with the strategy for the internalisation of external costs;

14.  Endorses the proposed move towards full application of ‘user pays’ and ‘polluter pays’ principles, and the commitment to eliminating distortions, including harmful subsidies, to generating revenue and to guaranteeing financing, including for future transport investment, and calls for measures to achieve these aims to be implemented by 2020;

15.  Recognises that full internalisation of external costs for all transport modes, reflecting the ‘polluter pays’ principle, is an essential policy measure to help drive the move towards lower-carbon transport;

16.  Notes that internalisation of costs is necessary in order to promote competition in the transport sector, which must not be hampered by environmentally harmful subsidies;

17.  Stresses that all modes of transport must internalise their external adaptation costs;

18.  Stresses the need of an integrated transport policy that ensures that the entire value chain of transport and logistics addresses appropriately the challenges of transport and mobility, particularly those originating in urban areas; calls for enhanced coordination among policy-makers in the European institutions, and for permanent dialogue and consultation with the logistics industry, transport service suppliers and customers in a European logistic and mobility forum;

19.  Calls on the Commission to help the Member States to calculate further and in detail the economic, environmental and health costs associated with this strategy, so as to facilitate in the best possible way the internalisation of external costs;

20.  Stresses that the behaviour of transport users is decisive and calls for the creation of incentives to choose sustainable means of transport, where proposals should be made by 2013 to develop initiatives that promote behavioural changes, especially among young people, and develop infrastructure for pedestrians and cyclists in towns, to double the number of passengers on public transport, which mainly uses alternative sources of energy, and to establish e-tickets for multi-modal travel, where pricing policy should be considered as an incentive; calls on the Commission to present a strategy to promote the use of bicycles and safe journeys by foot in urban areas;

21.  Recommends that the Commission continue to support and, if appropriate, initiate with Member States campaigns to create awareness of environmentally friendly transport alternatives, better known as the active travel concept, i.e. walking and cycling, especially in sensitive urban areas where air quality and noise are a threat to human health; recommends, therefore, that the Commission develop a Master Plan on Walking and Cycling; suggests that employers, in cooperation with local authorities, could incentivise employees to use more resource-efficient means of commuting; calls on the Commission and the Member States to draw up urban mobility plans for all EU cities, with specific measures to promote intermodalism and facilitate and encourage the use of bicycles and other environmentally friendly means of transport;

22.  Calls on the Commission and the Member States to present a joint strategy involving information, communication and consultation of the players involved, including, in particular, participation by the citizens concerned, on the needs, planning, development and financing of the infrastructure required for growth, mobility, development and employment, in accordance with commitments made under the Europe 2020 strategy;

23.  Calls on the Commission to address the local transport monopolies which have evolved in the Member States and which create discontinuities and distortions; notes, therefore, the need for an anti-monopoly policy specifically for the transport sector;

24.  Points out that, compared with road transport, rail transport generates far less pollution, is much less energy-intensive, has a significantly lower environmental impact, is safer for users and is economically competitive; calls on the Commission to support, promote and provide financial support for European transport networks, with particular reference to support for the development of rail infrastructure in Member States in which rail transport is overshadowed by road transport;

25.  Points to the need for the EU to provide the financial support necessary for the development of the trans-European rail freight and passenger networks;

26.  Calls for priority to be given to promoting green logistics and improved mobility management;

27.  Emphasises the wide-ranging potential benefits of using ICT to manage transport networks, for example by reducing the number of journeys needed to deliver goods by ensuring more efficient use of distribution networks and improving traffic flow, which can reduce air pollution, fuel consumption and journey times;

28. Notes that the Single European Sky and SESAR, in addition to the launch of new, fuel-efficient and relatively silent aircraft, show how fuel consumption can be reduced by +/-10 %;

29. Points out that railways and high-speed lines in particular could make a major contribution to a competitive, resource-efficient transport system which would provide fast links between Europe’s regions;

30. Is aware that a massive switch to new technology in the transport sector takes some time, and that actions within this process should take into account the diverse situations of individual Member States, but in the meantime encourages eco-innovation and calls for the use of more readily renewable fuels which reduce CO2 emissions, for investment in co-modality and for the concept of the internalisation of external costs to be extended to all modes of transport; observes that at this moment the rational use of fossil fuel is still the easiest way to curb transport emissions;

31.  Notes that the success of the targets we set in reducing CO2 emissions depend on the technological developments, and that we thus need to invest in research and development in order to bridge the existing gap between cost-efficient targets and investments in new technologies, which would make these targets feasible;

32.  Takes the view that the EU must support research and promote European technological leadership as regards the technologies necessary for the development of environmentally friendly sustainable means of transport, such as vehicles powered by electricity from renewable sources or hydrogen-propelled vehicles;

33.  Calls on the Commission to put additional effort into coordinating the hitherto fragmented actions and initiatives undertaken by local authorities on urban mobility, and to facilitate policy transfers between cities;

34.  Stresses that the EU should maintain its leadership by consolidating its role as a production and research centre for all forms of transport, the priorities of which are lower emissions in the sector, a better logistics chain, safety and better traffic management;

35.  Insists that legislation, including working time regulations for the benefit of the safety and health of transport workers, be correctly implemented and enforced in all transport modes;

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

26.10.2011

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

59

0

0

Members present for the final vote

János Áder, Elena Oana Antonescu, Kriton Arsenis, Sophie Auconie, Pilar Ayuso, Paolo Bartolozzi, Sergio Berlato, Martin Callanan, Nessa Childers, Chris Davies, Bairbre de Brún, Esther de Lange, Anne Delvaux, Bas Eickhout, Edite Estrela, Jill Evans, Karl-Heinz Florenz, Elisabetta Gardini, Gerben-Jan Gerbrandy, Françoise Grossetête, Satu Hassi, Jolanta Emilia Hibner, Dan Jørgensen, Karin Kadenbach, Christa Klaß, Holger Krahmer, Jo Leinen, Peter Liese, Linda McAvan, Radvilė Morkūnaitė-Mikulėnienė, Miroslav Ouzký, Gilles Pargneaux, Antonyia Parvanova, Andres Perello Rodriguez, Mario Pirillo, Pavel Poc, Anna Rosbach, Oreste Rossi, Daciana Octavia Sârbu, Carl Schlyter, Horst Schnellhardt, Richard Seeber, Theodoros Skylakakis, Claudiu Ciprian Tănăsescu, Salvatore Tatarella, Anja Weisgerber, Åsa Westlund, Glenis Willmott, Sabine Wils, Marina Yannakoudakis, Andrea Zanoni

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Inés Ayala Sender, Matthias Groote, Romana Jordan Cizelj, Philippe Juvin, Riikka Manner, Jiří Maštálka, Michail Tremopoulos

Substitute(s) under Rule 187(2) present for the final vote

Peter Šťastný


OPINION of the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy (7.10.2011)

for the Committee on Transport and Tourism

on the Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area – Towards a competitive and resource efficient transport system

(2011/2096(INI))

Rapporteur: Krišjānis Kariņš

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on Industry, Research and Energy calls on the Committee on Transport and Tourism, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.  Acknowledges that the EU has to move towards a more sustainable, efficient and competitive transport sector which contributes to its emission reduction targets and to lowering dependency on energy and energy imports, including from unstable and undemocratic regimes, as well as to full integration of EU regions, in order to be competitive in the world economy;

2.  Points out that the transport sector accounts for more than a quarter of the EU’s CO2 emissions; emphasises the many initiatives the European Union has taken to reduce transport emissions and to promote the competitiveness and efficiency of the European transport sector, such as the Eurovignette, the deployment of Intelligent Transport Systems, fuel efficiency for vehicles and labelling of tyres; stresses that the transport sector’s emissions are still rising and that the sector’s commitments to take action must be stepped up, i.e. by addressing the inadequacy of infrastructure to promote energy efficiency and by applying green technologies;

3.  Is aware of the major contribution made by the transport sector to industrial policy, competitiveness and the EU’s trade balance; notes that in 2009 exports of machinery and equipment in the transport sector totalled EUR 454.7 billion, accounting for 41.5% of all exports outside the EU-27; notes further that in 2009 the EU registered its biggest trade surpluses in the areas of machinery and equipment in the transport sector (EUR 112.6 billion) and transport services (EUR 21.5 billion);

4.  Stresses that energy saving, including fuel efficiency standards, and emission reduction policies for the transport sector can drive EU competitiveness and innovation as well as resulting in considerable savings without constraining mobility; believes that any new targets should be based on a broad agreement between all the parties concerned and should be achievable by implementing the technical progress made; believes that a resource-efficient transport sector can only be achieved by a balanced and integrated policy approach that provides the right incentives for economic actors;

5.  Emphasises the high potential of energy efficiency and renewable energy sources for the transport sector; stresses that the energy and climate targets for the transport sector can be reached by applying a mix of different energy sources and by exploiting the existing energy saving options;

6.  Notes that many innovations in fuel efficient technology are already fully available on the market;

7.  Emphasises the importance of promoting electro-mobility, coupled with the introduction of more renewable energy in the electricity sector, to meet the Europe 2020 goals, in particular green jobs and growth as well as reducing air pollution; notes that electrification of transport will firstly focus on passenger transport; stresses the need to take and to implement the necessary regulatory measures and urges the Commission and Member States to swiftly adopt common interoperable standards and to roll-out charging infrastructure across the EU; believes that the ‘electric mobility’ debate should be put into a well balanced context, to include the potential of the market for electric bicycles and the experience in mass transit by electrified tramways and trains;

8.  Emphasises the great potential ICT and Intelligent Transport Systems and Services have to reduce transport emissions in travel and freight, especially in connection with a future energy system in which electrified transport plays a crucial role; takes the view that it is necessary to step up the transport sector’s obligations in terms of technology and to promote more efficient organisation of transport services; stresses the need to promote innovative solutions such as optimised route planning, intermodality or communication between vehicles and infrastructure; recalls that use of ICT, and especially of videoconferencing, can help reduce the need to travel, for both individuals and businesses;

9.  Stresses the need for intra-modal transport solutions and that no single form of transport can deliver on all accounts as there is a clear need for a smarter combination of road transport, railway, aviation and shipping;

10. Considers that the use of ICT in the road transport sector and its interfaces with other modes of transport will make a significant contribution to improving environmental performance, efficiency, road transport safety and security, public safety and the mobility of passengers and goods, while also ensuring the proper functioning of the internal market, greater competitiveness and higher employment; stresses the imperative need to adapt ICT standardisation policy which will not only contribute to the development of ITS but also to speeding up work on technical standards for electric vehicles and smart grids and meters; these should be implemented in the context of the following priority area: provision at EU level of information services concerning multimodal transport options;

11. Reiterates its opinion that there is a need for modular road trains to be more widely deployed, as these are a sustainable solution which contributes to a higher energy efficiency level in the road transport sector; acknowledges further that the diverging sets of rules which modular road trains encounter when crossing country borders are detrimental to increased use of this method of road transport; calls upon the Commission to inquire which differences in rules can easily be bridged and how an increased level of cross-border transport by modular road trains can be ensured;

12. Points out that European research can provide new solutions to reduce CO2 emissions and increase transport efficiency, and welcomes the Commission’s strategic approach in this regard; stresses the need for a subprogramme dedicated to mobility with as its objective increasing transport efficiency e.g. by promoting smart and interoperable routing systems for all transport modes, integrating systems such as Galileo, SESAR, ERTMS etc; notes that cutting-edge technologies such as Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) or EGNOS/Galileo could be used in implementing ITS applications; calls for EGNOS certification, given that this is a key element in terms of use; believes furthermore that more efficient ways of commercialising research results are needed, together with further research into the integration of ever increasing volumes of renewable energy in conjunction with a more intelligent energy system in which electrified transport is a central feature of the solution;

13. Calls on the Commission to promote the development and use of innovative devices to improve energy efficiency (e.g. spoilers for trucks and other forms of improved aerodynamics, or functioning) for all means of transport in a cost-efficient manner;

14. Reiterates that fuel diversification and strengthening energy security are two major challenges for the EU’s transport sector, to which electricity domestically produced out of various energy vectors can contribute significantly;

15. Underlines that the European Union should maintain its strong position on the world market in the field of sustainable transport and mobility products, such as rail signalling and infrastructure systems, mobility management software; insists, therefore, that its efforts in sustainable surface transport research and development be increased;

16. Advocates an increased role for genuinely sustainable biofuels, in particular second generation biofuels, in the EU energy mix, taking into account indirect land use change; emphasises the economic advantage for EU industry of shifting production to second generation biofuels; notes, nevertheless, that any introduction of a higher proportion of biofuels has to be well prepared, ideally harmonised within the EU, communicated and executed, that all relevant stakeholders have to be ready to supply the requested fuel mix at the time of its introduction, and that public authorities need to explain the consequences of any change in the fuel mix;

17. Considers that diversification of energy sources is necessary for security of supply and in this regard is of the opinion that any new tax incentives have to be considered from the point of view of a sustainable and competitive fuel mix in the transport sector;

18. Stresses that reducing administrative burdens is essential if there is to be full interoperability on Europe’s railways and that the authorisation procedure for rolling stock, in particular, needs to be made more effective and standardised throughout the EU;

19. Stresses that electric cars have huge potential as a means of transport, especially in urban areas; asks the Commission and the Member States to step up work on developing common European standards for charging, and stresses that the development of smart grids is crucial for the success of electric cars;

20. Recognises that Europe’s railway industry is increasingly vulnerable to competition on the EU market from third-country suppliers; expresses concern at the substantial barriers in existence that block EU suppliers from bidding for public contracts in non-EU countries;

21. Draws attention to the role of electric vehicles in the development of energy-efficient transport, and recommends that the Member States act to implement Directive 2009/33/EC on the promotion of clean and energy-efficient road transport vehicles, in the context of public transport;

22. Points up the need to create, at European level, an even stronger environment and incentives for decarbonisation of the transport sector;

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

6.10.2011

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

42

0

4

Members present for the final vote

Jean-Pierre Audy, Ivo Belet, Bendt Bendtsen, Jan Březina, Maria Da Graça Carvalho, Giles Chichester, Ioan Enciu, Vicky Ford, Gaston Franco, Adam Gierek, Norbert Glante, Fiona Hall, Jacky Hénin, Edit Herczog, Romana Jordan Cizelj, Krišjānis Kariņš, Lena Kolarska-Bobińska, Béla Kovács, Bogdan Kazimierz Marcinkiewicz, Marisa Matias, Judith A. Merkies, Jaroslav Paška, Miloslav Ransdorf, Herbert Reul, Jens Rohde, Paul Rübig, Amalia Sartori, Francisco Sosa Wagner, Konrad Szymański, Michael Theurer, Evžen Tošenovský, Ioannis A. Tsoukalas, Claude Turmes, Niki Tzavela, Marita Ulvskog, Vladimir Urutchev, Alejo Vidal-Quadras, Henri Weber

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Antonio Cancian, Jolanta Emilia Hibner, Yannick Jadot, Werner Langen, Marian-Jean Marinescu, Vladko Todorov Panayotov, Catherine Trautmann

Substitute(s) under Rule 187(2) present for the final vote

Werner Schulz


OPINION of the Committee on Regional Development (20.10.2011)

for the Committee on Transport and Tourism

on the Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area – Towards a competitive and resource efficient transport system

(2011/2096(INI))

Rapporteur: Wojciech Michał Olejniczak

SUGGESTIONS

The Committee on Regional Development calls on the Committee on Transport and Tourism, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions in its motion for a resolution:

1.  Notes that large divergences exist in terms of transport infrastructure and geographical accessibility between the eastern and western parts of the EU, between the northern and southern regions of the EU, and between central, peripheral and outermost regions; takes the view that the transport system within the EU should support, in line with the principle of territorial continuity, balanced regional development and territorial cohesion, and respect the objectives of sustainable development, all of which will lead to the creation of a single European transport area; highlights the special needs islands, mountainous and outermost regions have in terms of accessibility and efficient mainland connections, of enhancing their competitive position and harnessing the potential offered by regional airports and intra- and extra-European sea routes; highlights the application of thetransport equivalent’ principle, as well as the specificities of mountainous and outermost regions;

2.  Recalls the crucial role that regional policy plays in the adjustment needed for the balanced development of transport in Europe; calls on the EU and the Member States to ensure sufficient funding in their budgetary planning and sufficient project planning and implementation capacities, but not to do so to the detriment of the cohesion policy’s goals and resources; stresses that increased EU cofinancing for infrastructure projects in convergence regions can help improve the absorption of Community support; recalls the Commission’s recommendation to use monies from cohesion policy funds more resource-efficiently and to prioritise transport projects that enhance sustainability and are part of existing integrated transport strategies; invites Member States to consider that an efficient European transport network requires substantial financing, and that a wide range of sources, public as well as private, are available;

3.  Points out that urban transport services are covered by the subsidiarity principle; stresses, nevertheless, that European cooperation, coordination and funding would enable local authorities to meet the challenges they are facing in their efforts to achieve inclusive growth and better social cohesion; notes that urban areas suffer most from traffic congestion, emissions and noise pollution; believes, in this context, that local authorities can make a major contribution to combating climate change through intelligent local public transport systems and sustainable city district planning, including bicycle paths; calls, in order to effectively address all these challenges, for the integrated management of urban, suburban and rural transport;

4.  Points out that transport networks play a leading role in spatial planning policies; stresses the particular importance of major transport infrastructure, such as high speed railways, in boosting local development; considers that the macro-regions and the strategies for their development have the potential to play a more active role in the implementation of a coordinated, effective and sustainable transport policy; recalls the importance of drawing up, planning and implementing joint transport infrastructure strategies, as well as the need to disseminate best practices in the field of transport; stresses that EU citizens and enterprises will be direct beneficiaries of a single European transport area with, as its goal, a reduction in the time and resources allocated to freight and passenger transport, and closer integration of the markets;

5.  Recalls the importance of drawing up, planning and implementing joint transport infrastructure strategies at cross-border level; highlights the importance of European territorial cooperation in achieving these coordinated strategies, and the urgency of certain cross-border investments;

6.  Calls on the Commission and the Member States to involve local and regional authorities in the implementation of the White Paper;

7.  Stresses that establishing good transport infrastructure and good access will make all regions economically stronger and more attractive to direct investment, enhancing in the longer term both their own competitiveness and the competitive position of the EU as a whole, ensuring the solid development of the internal market and achieving the goal of territorial cohesion;

8.  Stresses the pivotal importance of short sea shipping and inland waterways, which link different European regions and seas but whose potential has yet to be fully harnessed, considering them as fields for the further development of the internal market and the achievement of cohesion policy goals; considers it important to establish alternative inter-regional freight and passenger plans in the event of natural disasters;

RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

6.10.2011

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

40

2

1

Members present for the final vote

François Alfonsi, Luís Paulo Alves, Charalampos Angourakis, Catherine Bearder, Jean-Paul Besset, Victor Boştinaru, Philip Bradbourn, Zuzana Brzobohatá, John Bufton, Alain Cadec, Salvatore Caronna, Tamás Deutsch, Rosa Estaràs Ferragut, Brice Hortefeux, Danuta Maria Hübner, Filiz Hakaeva Hyusmenova, Juozas Imbrasas, María Irigoyen Pérez, Seán Kelly, Mojca Kleva, Elżbieta Katarzyna Łukacijewska, Ramona Nicole Mănescu, Riikka Manner, Iosif Matula, Erminia Mazzoni, Lambert van Nistelrooij, Jan Olbrycht, Monika Smolková, Georgios Stavrakakis, Nuno Teixeira, Michail Tremopoulos, Viktor Uspaskich, Oldřich Vlasák, Kerstin Westphal, Joachim Zeller

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Jens Geier, Lena Kolarska-Bobińska, Maurice Ponga, Elisabeth Schroedter, Patrice Tirolien, Giommaria Uggias, Derek Vaughan, Sabine Verheyen


RESULT OF FINAL VOTE IN COMMITTEE

Date adopted

22.11.2011

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

34

5

2

Members present for the final vote

Inés Ayala Sender, Georges Bach, Izaskun Bilbao Barandica, Antonio Cancian, Michael Cramer, Philippe De Backer, Saïd El Khadraoui, Ismail Ertug, Carlo Fidanza, Knut Fleckenstein, Jacqueline Foster, Mathieu Grosch, Jim Higgins, Dieter-Lebrecht Koch, Georgios Koumoutsakos, Werner Kuhn, Jörg Leichtfried, Bogusław Liberadzki, Eva Lichtenberger, Marian-Jean Marinescu, Gesine Meissner, Hubert Pirker, David-Maria Sassoli, Vilja Savisaar-Toomast, Olga Sehnalová, Debora Serracchiani, Brian Simpson, Keith Taylor, Silvia-Adriana Ţicău, Thomas Ulmer, Peter van Dalen, Dominique Vlasto, Artur Zasada, Roberts Zīle

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Philip Bradbourn, Michel Dantin, Dominique Riquet, Alfreds Rubiks, Laurence J.A.J. Stassen, Sabine Wils

Substitute(s) under Rule 187(2) present for the final vote

Jan Mulder

Last updated: 5 December 2011Legal notice