In September, 2017, UNEP and Mobike signed a memorandum of understanding to form a strategic partnership with an aim to globally promote the development of sustainable transportation and works towards the goal of a pollution-free planet.
Résumé en français: En septembre 2017, le PNUE et Mobike ont signé un protocole d'accord pour former un partenariat stratégique dans le but de promouvoir globalement le développement du transport durable et de travailler à l'objectif d'une planète sans pollution.
UNEP stands for United Nations Environment Program. It is a UN environment body that supports carbon free mobility in Africa's rapidly growing cities.
Early march, 2018, the partnership already witnessed a sense of direction where the United Nations Office at Nairobi launched a bicycle sharing transport scheme for staff and visitors as part of broader efforts to advance the green mobility agenda.
The two-wheel machines that were donated by Chinese bike sharing giant, Mobike, are intended to enhance movement in the extensive UN compound but also to promote health of riders alongside the sustainable mobility concept in Kenya.
According to Erik Solheim, the Executive Director of UN Environment (UNEP). He said: “Our bike share scheme will serve as a best practice for visiting countries, cities and other organizations. Initiatives like these are a good starting point in showing how convenient non-motorized transport can be both for getting around and protecting our environment.”
Erik Solheim went ahead to revealed that Mobike donated 100 bicycles to support the eco-friendly transport model within the UN offices in Kenya’s capital Nairobi. He said: “We are starting with 100 bikes but hope to add more over time.”
It is said that the bike sharing scheme at the UN offices in Nairobi will help facilitate smooth flow of human traffic that has intensified in recent times.
Sahle-Work Zewde, the director-general of the United Nations Office at Nairobi said the user-friendly bicycles will enable over 3,500 staff to move freely within the large compound. She said: “We have a complex and important task to our staff, consultants, contractors and visitors-to help them on arrival, get around and leave the compound in a safe, efficient and sustainable manner.”
Aisa Kirabo Kacyira, the deputy executive director of UN Human Settlements Program (UNHABITAT) also hailed the launch of the bike sharing scheme, terming it a milestone in green transport. She said: “Cycling means better air quality and improved urban transport.”
In conclusion, I believe the bike sharing scheme will strengthen the broader UN sustainability agenda in relation the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Goal 11. Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable.
Goal 13. Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts.
Goal 17. Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development.
When you think "green mobility" what comes to your mind?
By Joseph Semuju
Community Manager - AMO
African Mobilities Observatory - AMO, MICHELIN.