Co-wheels Car Club, Living Streets, Bespoke Logistics Solutions and Ecotricity Group have been shortlisted alongside eight more pioneering sustainable travel initiatives from France and Belgium. The 12 shortlisted projects will now go through a rigorous judging process, before four finalists are selected in April and the overall winners are announced at a prestigious ceremony in London on 22 May 2014.
The Award, now in its third year, recognises innovative travel schemes that are leading the way in encouraging people to adopt more sustainable ways of travelling, helping improve quality of life whilst reducing congestion, pollution, and CO2 emissions.
The shortlist for 2014 features:
· Co-wheels Car Club – this Durham based social enterprise is helping to reduce the UK’s reliance on cars through its national network of car clubs. Electric cars and bikes as well regular vehicles are all available to hire by the hour
· Living Streets - has been campaigning on pedestrian issues since 1929 and its national Walking Week (12–16 May 2014) is a huge success every year
· Bespoke Logistics Solutions (BLS) – partnered with Berkshire NHS Trust to introduce innovative software that automatically selects the best and most efficient travel options to transport patients
· Ecotricity Group Limited – based in Stroud, Gloucestershire, Ecotricity is a green energy company that has created an ‘electric highway’, enabling electric cars to charge at service stations nationwide
· Tisséo-SMTC – Tisséo is a public service organisation in Toulouse, which provides local businesses green travel advice to help reduce the frequency of car travel in the city
· ID Bus - The French national coach network, ID Bus has successfully persuaded people to avoid cars for long journeys
· Pignon sur Rue – promotes cycle tourism in France’s third largest city, Lyon, through a range of creative programmes which can easily be replicated across the country
· Mountain Wilderness France – is working to reduce reliance on car travel around the French Alps by creating and promoting alternative greener travel options
· Optimobil Vlaanderen – Cambio – is a large scale car club based in the Flanders region of Belgium. With over 500 vehicles to share, local residents reduce costs and lower emissions
· Provincie Limburg –Limburg Council is encouraging local businesses to use more sustainable modes of travel through its travel support service, Mobidesk Limburg
· Taxistop asbl – a car-sharing website which encourages commuters to share cars in the Wallonia region of Belgium
· Stad Mechelen – The town of Mechelen in Belgium has transformed its city centre to become a partly car free zone, reducing traffic in the city centre by 70% in the process
Nicolas Petrovic, Chief Executive of Eurostar, said; “Since we partnered with Ashden in 2011 we have discovered some ground-breaking sustainable travel schemes in the UK, France and Belgium. Each year the quality of entries increases and all demonstrate the impact sustainable travel projects can have on the environment.
“The 2014 shortlist shows the breadth of innovation in sustainable travel. We hope that by celebrating the contenders successes we will encourage more people to think differently about how they travel, and demonstrate that travelling by train, bus, tram or bike is often cheaper, easier and more efficient than driving or flying.”
The Eurostar Ashden Award for Sustainable Travel is part of Eurostar’s Tread Lightly programme to reduce the business’ impact on the environment and encourage people to switch to more sustainable modes of transport.