Environmental Sustainability as The Biggest Challenge of Transportation Transformation

Written by: Nabila Alifia Nugroho

Designed by: Qoirunnisaa M. W.

The Industrial Revolution has changed the way humans produce goods and services, including how the mode of transportation functions. From just a steam engine to developing now into a supercar, the transformation of vehicles into an interesting phenomenon that is interesting to discuss. However, in line with this high growth, economic factors will certainly be in the spotlight, especially how companies that produce these vehicles can continue to create environmentally friendly products. The issue of environmental sustainability has become one of the things to worry about considering that the number of vehicles currently circulating is not decreasing.

The last few decades have shown such a marvelous change in mobility and transportation, which continues until now. Demand for mobility, volume or traffic, and even the need for infrastructure are increasing. Decision-makers in policy at the same time have to address climate change by reducing CO2 emissions and energy consumption. As the situation is expected to deteriorate, leading to a fundamental change, a transformation of the transportation system is expected to occur, which at the same time should affect our understanding of mobility.

As with every change, decision-makers in transportation, spatial and economic planning, and policy need to adapt to the change process. The transportation system has to be designed according to the new situation. The term ‘transformation’ describes not only a change process that affects socio-economic factor and political drivers but also refer to the process in which decision-makers are aware of an ongoing change. By the definition, decision-makers can shape the process actively according to the goals each of them has set.

Many countries now implement such policies to ensure the sustainability of the environment especially with the high progression from transportation mode. The question now is how can the transport sector reduce its emissions in line with global climate goals while keeping up with demand for transport infrastructure. Sustainable transport infrastructure needs to fulfill the four common sustainability criteria which are environmental, social, institutional, and economic. These criteria can be accomplished by prioritizing five strategic elements which are factors like resilient, inclusive, technological, productive, and flexibility. Furthermore, transport infrastructure operators should have clear performance indicators and targets not only for economic performance, but also for environmental, social, and institutional performance.


Milani, Luca, Detlev Mohr, and Nicola Sandri. (2021, 1 October). Built to last: Making sustainability a priority in transport infrastructure. Retrieved from McKinsey : https://www.mckinsey.com/industries/travel-logistics-and-infrastructure/our-insights/built-to-last-making-sustainability-a-priority-in-transport-infrastructure

Hoppe, Merja, Andreas Christ, Alberto Castro, Martin Winter, and Tiina-Maria Seppänen. (2014, 20 November). Transformation in transportation?. Retrieved from Springer Open : https://eujournalfuturesresearch.springeropen.com/articles/10.1007/s40309-014-0045-6

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