Electric bikes

Barcelona’s Electric Mobility Plan

Global Struggles With Transportation

On the topic of pollution, usually the first thought to come to anyone’s mind is transportation, and they certainly wouldn’t be misguided. According to a 2016 study from the U.S.’ Environmental Protection Agency or EPA, transportation accounts for 28% of the country’s total greenhouse gas (ghg) emissions, making it the largest contributor of ghg emissions in the country. This trend isn’t exclusive to the United States either, another study conducted in the same year by the European Environmental Agency found, similarly, that transportation accounted for approximately 27% of the EU’s total ghg emissions, meaning this isn’t just a regional or country wide problem, but a global one. As such, Global governmental entities, such as the UN, have been working to set standards for a appropriate levels of emissions.  

Solutions in Barcelona

However, despite poor transportation tendencies/planning having a global effect, it’s a problem that necessitates attention on a local or city-wide levels. Barcelona, a city that has struggled with managing it’s emission levels in the past, is spearheading a municipal project to direct its mobility in the direction of sustainability. This plan includes a variety of measures to increase use of less harmful forms of transit, including bike-sharing ports as well as more connected or efficient public transit lines, but the city is also looking to provide solutions that aim to keep the comfort of private mobility that we’ve all grown to love so much, and much it lies in electric.

There is a particular liberty that comes along with personally driving an automobile, and it’s difficult to believe that we as human beings would quickly give that liberty up, making for an interesting discourse in the quest for sustainable mobility. Luckily there are methods to lessening the negative effects of private transit without completely changing behavior.

Barcelona has been steadily making its city streets more accessible and user friendly for electric vehicles in an attempt to phase out petrol based vehicles prepare for their proposed ban of sale come 2040. One such method has been to drastically increase the number of charging stations throughout the city. An argument consistently posed against driving electric is the lack places to recharge, Barcelona hopes to make this argument by introducing some 450 charging stations within the city limits 125 of these points made specifically for motorcycles.

Other than simply providing access to the use of electric vehicles, the Ajuntament de Barcelona (Barcelona’s city government) has been incentivising the switch to electric through other means as well. Across the city green and blue“electric parking spots”, parking provided specifically for electric vehicles, have been created and allow those driving electric vehicle to use the them free of charge – a pretty generous offer in city already lacking in parking space. Not only are you relieved from paying for your parking (in certain areas of the city) with an electric vehicle, but the government of barcelona is also providing a 75% tax break on all purchases of electric vehicles.

It’s realized by the government of Barcelona that, while public transit and other forms of mobility that require no excess energy from greenhouse gasses like walking or biking are preferred, people still need to take long distance trips or want to abide by their time schedules only. With these things in mind, at the moment, electric vehicles provide the best alternative and is, in turn, being adamantly pursued by the city.

How does Mouters fit in?

As the cities, not only Barcelona, begin to invest in the future of electric transportation, both public but private forms, platforms like Mouters which provide a greater range of access to electric vehicles to the public, will also become increasingly more important.  Cities are changing, we are hoping to change alongside them.

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