On June 20, the IDB, together with seven other multilateral development banks (MDBs), declared a strong commitment to sustainable transportation. The eight MDBs pledged that they will invest US$175 billion to finance more sustainable transportation systems over the next decade, promoting inclusive economic development while also protecting the environment. The pledge was made at the start of United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20).
Congestion, air pollution, road accidents and transport related to climate change can cost 5 percent to 10 percent of GDP per year. The transportation sector is now the fastest growing source of greenhouse gases as a result of decades of urban planning that focused on improving mobility for automobiles at the expense of public transport users, cyclists and pedestrians. This approach has made life much more difficult for people in cities, especially the urban poor.
The Voluntary Commitments comes as a result of the Rio+20 campaign of the Partnership on Sustainable Low Carbon Transport (SLoCaT), a multi-stakeholder partnership of which the IDB is a founding member and recently held the chairmanship.
"The Rio+20 Voluntary Commitments on Sustainable Transport organized by the SLoCaT partnership will be of great help to IDB in scaling up our efforts on sustainable transport in the LAC region. Especially the $175 billion voluntary commitment to which IDB is expected to contribute substantially and in accordance to the resources demanded by the countries for the sector."
“Never before have these institutions collaborated on such a global scale. The breakthrough that we are witnessing allows us to plan for the one billion people who will move to cities over the next 20 years and the one billion people still living in poverty” says Cornie Huizenga, joint convener of the SLoCaT Partnership and organizer of the SLoCaT Rio+20 campaign.