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I N C LU S I V E G R E E N G R O W T H: T H E PAT H WAY TO S U S TA I N A B L E D E V E LO PM E N T

BOX 6.1

The case for immediate action in the transport sector

Transport is a major contributor to CO 2 emissions. It is also one of the fastest-growing sources of emissions. Not surprisingly given the 1 billion cars already on the road, road transport accounts for about two-thirds of total transport emissions. Developing countries, which still face a huge transport infrastructure gap, have the opportunity to choose their transport development path: lowemission transport or car-dependent transport (box figure B6.1.1). Experience suggests that demand for car ownership increases dramatically at annual household incomes of $6,000–$8,000. If history repeats itself, an additional 2.3 billion cars will be added by 2050, mostly in developing countries,

given expected economic growth and past patterns of motorization (Chamon and others 2008). Without policies to encourage high-density urbanization and public transport, high reliance on individual car transport will ensue. If public transport is included as a major part of modal structure in urban transport, there is no conflict between a low emission transport sector and rapid growth or high income. In fact, economies with some of the lowest ratios of energy consumption to gross domestic product (GDP) in the world— including Japan, Singapore, and Hong Kong SAR, China—have experienced extraordinary development over the past few decades.

FIGURE B6.1.1 As income rises, will countries choose low energy consumption in road transport? (relationship between per capita income and energy consumption from the road sector) 2.2 Qatar

2.0 1.8

United States

kiloton of oil equivalent

1.6 United Arab Emirates Canada

1.4 Saudi Arabia

1.2 1.0

Iceland 0.8

Switzerland Norway

0.6 Korea,Rep.

Iran, Islamic 0.4 Rep.

Israel

Hong Kong SAR, China

0.2 0

Japan

Singapore

0

Cuba 5,000

10,000

15,000

20,000

25,000

GDP per capita ($2000) Source: World Bank 2011d.

30,000

35,000

40,000

45,000

Inclusive Green Growth  
Inclusive Green Growth  

As the global population heads toward 9 billion by 2050, decisions made today will lock countries into growth patterns that may or may not b...