Chair of BT4Europe, the European Network of Business Travel Associations, Patrick Diemer, is in Brussels this week for a series of meetings with EU officials. BT4Europe want to step up their call for swift action to green business travel and in particular press home the demands made in their recent Sustainability Position Paper and their submission to the European Commission’s ‘CountEmissionsEU’ consultation.
The business travel industry in the EU, worth € 54 billion a year, facilitates the business travel of millions of Europeans every year, sustains thousands of jobs across Europe and is vital to our economies and our societies. The industry is determined to reduce its ecologicalfootprint in line with the European Green Deal and become sustainable.
BT4Europe, on behalf of their 13 members who represent leading travel industry stakeholder across Europe, argue major regulatory reforms are required at an EU level to help the industry deliver decarbonisation.
First, in the context of the ‘CountEmissionsEU’ consultation, Patrick Diemer will meet European Commission officials to highlight the fact that buyers of business travel in Europe need to be fully informed about the amount of CO2 emissions caused by all means of business travel, which is currently not the case.
Patrick will call for ‘urgent and significant steps to be taken to improve access to standardized, accurate and comparable data on the CO2 impact of business travel. A consistent measure of carbon emissions from business travel is urgently needed, which at the moment is simply not available.
He continued: ‘To green business travel we must all work together to ensure the CO2 footprint of business travel options become as important as price, customers have a right to CO2 information and ‘CountEmissionsEU’ is an opportunity to set a unified standard for CO2 emission calculations. We must start immediately to green business travel. Hence, we should start with CO2 information as soon as possible.’
Second, he will also meet other EU officials to discuss the forthcoming EU Multimodal Digital Mobility Strategy.
Patrick said: ‘The EU’s Multimodal digital mobility services initiative represents a major opportunity to integrate ticketing options, including rail, and improve the visibility of CO2 footprint at the point of sale, allowing users to make an informed choice on the most sustainable travel option. In particular, for cross-border travel this information is not readily available today.
He concluded: ‘We look forward to working with the EU to ensure this important initiative helps to better integrate public transport and rail services to achieve seamless multimodal passenger transport, crucial to delivering the EU’s Green Deal.’
Patrick will also be meeting senior industry and Member State officials and is available for interview.