In recent years, technical progress and efficiency improvements have failed to bring about a turnaround toward greater sustainability in the area of mobility. Numerous counterproductive effects, such as increasing passenger and commercial traffic or the overcompensation of efficiency savings by more powerful drives, have caused CO2 emissions in the mobility sector to continue to rise. The transport sector, which is responsible for about one-fifth of Germany's greenhouse gas emissions, must be comprehensively transformed in a timely manner if the Paris climate goals and the German climate protection plan are to be achieved. This will only succeed through a triad of efficiency, consistency and sufficiency measures.
The project addresses the role that sufficiency can play in reducing environmental impacts in the transport sector. To date, the potential of sufficiency as a sustainability strategy in transport is unclear and its practical application is limited. The focus of previous policies to reduce transport emissions has been on technical measures. These strategies, which focus on optimizing resource use (efficiency) and nature compatibility (consistency), are important. However, they do not challenge consumption per se and the behavioral patterns of people behind it. Both strategies will only be successful if their effects are not cancelled out by rebound effects. It is therefore important to place sufficiency strategies more firmly in the focus of the sustainability debate.
The changes in behavior caused by the Corona pandemic harbor both opportunities and risks for the success of the transport turnaround. The project will therefore also consider possible lessons from the pandemic for more sufficiency in transport.
Previous approaches such as traffic avoidance and modal shift are part of the sufficiency field, but represent only a section of the approach behind the term. Sufficiency measures are considered to be socially controversial, insufficiently accepted and thus difficult to implement. The project will develop a sufficiency strategy for the transport sector and ways of successfully communicating sufficiency-related mobility habits in order to bring sufficiency out of its niche and anchor it in the middle of society.
Transportation is not a need in itself. In most cases, it derives from other needs such as working, going to school, meeting acquaintances, shopping, going to a restaurant or a movie, playing sports, or taking a trip. Sufficiency-based mobility habits emerge when the way activities are carried out changes (e.g., home office) or when the traffic associated with fulfilling the needs is realized in a way that is lower in emissions and more resource-efficient, beyond technical innovations, through adapted behaviors. The project is based on three main components:
From 10/2020 until 02/2023