Tuesday

13th Apr 2021

Podcast

Winning the Car Wars

  • Pascal Smet is the popular secretary of state for urban development in Brussels who has fought for years in favour of car-free urban space. That goal once seemed like a galaxy far far away. Now it seems tantalisingly within reach (Photo: Helena Malikova)

Lockdowns in response to the coronavirus mean quieter cities, clearer skies and easier breathing.

For many city dwellers the lack of cars has been a revelation amid the suffering and loss inflicted by Covid-19. Now some cities are putting plans to keep cars out into hyperdrive.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Become an expert on Europe

Get instant access to all articles — and 20 years of archives. 14-day free trial.

... or subscribe as a group

Those moves foretell the kind of Europe where living together more sustainably becomes the norm. But such an outcome is not inevitable.

Pollution lobbies and the challenges facing mass transit systems are among the factors that could hold back a green recovery, says Mark Watts who heads the influential C40 network of global megacities.

Pascal Smet is the popular secretary of state for urban development in Brussels who has fought for years in favour of car-free urban space.

That goal once seemed like a galaxy far far away. Now it seems tantalisingly within reach.

We're grateful to the European Cultural Foundation for supporting this episode as a contribution to its Europe Day celebration. Visit the foundation's Europe Day website for more to see, read and experience.

Author bio

EU Scream is the progressive politics podcast from Brussels. Produced by James Kanter with graphics by Helena Malikova and music by Lara Natale.

You may also subscribe via iTunes, Spotify or from the EU Scream website.

How pandemic opens doors to green transport industry

While much of the transport sector is pushing for unconditional state aid and to postpone climate policy action, experts believe that this crisis could help to transform the EU's transportation system, making it more resilient, sustainable and flexible.

Opinion

Second-hand cars flaw in EU Green Deal

The moment Europe revels in its carbon-free transport system, most of the cars that emitted too much for EU standards will still be driving around for years somewhere else in the world.

Data and Dystopia

Despite concerns about civil liberties and activities of companies like Clearview AI and Palantir, EU authorities are shaping a new industrial policy around artificial intelligence.

Why Ursula von der Leyen won't go

Ursula von der Leyen appears secure in her job as president of the European Commission. That's despite a troubled vaccine rollout in which delayed deliveries can cost lives and livelihoods.

Keeping the Red Flag flying

The hard-left is often associated with the colours red for revolution, and black for anarcho-syndicalism. But the movement is more and more green these days too.

News in Brief

  1. US officials call for J&J vaccine pause over blood clots
  2. Putin refuses to talk about military build-up, Ukraine says
  3. EU bank to help Greece manage corona-recovery funds
  4. Johnson & Johnson vaccine deliveries to EU begin
  5. EU sanctions commander of Iran's Revolutionary Guard
  6. UK opens investigation into ex-PM Cameron lobbying
  7. 'Significant differences' in EU-UK talks on Northern Ireland
  8. Bulgarian PM reveals price rise in new EU-BioNTech deal

Keeping the Red Flag flying

The hard-left is often associated with the colours red for revolution, and black for anarcho-syndicalism. But the movement is more and more green these days too.

Taking Brexit personally

James Crisp has Boris Johnson's old job in Brussels covering EU affairs for The Daily Telegraph. He often writes with that jaundiced eye on the European project you'd expect from a correspondent on a venerable Conservative UK newspaper.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Nordic Council of MinistersDigitalisation can help us pick up the green pace
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersCOVID19 is a wake-up call in the fight against antibiotic resistance
  3. Nordic Council of MinistersThe Nordic Region can and should play a leading role in Europe’s digital development
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Council to host EU webinars on energy, digitalisation and antibiotic resistance
  5. UNESDAEU Code of Conduct can showcase PPPs delivering healthier more sustainable society
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersWomen benefit in the digitalised labour market

Latest News

  1. How the pandemic became an EU goldmine for crime
  2. China responds to 'low-efficacy' vaccine fears
  3. Merkel party chiefs support Laschet's chancellor bid
  4. EU refuses to bail out Montenegro's China loan
  5. Industry lobby to 'co-decide' on nearly €10bn EU public money
  6. Why Ursula von der Leyen won't go
  7. Incorporating gender in trade policy to benefit all
  8. Does Italian regionalism actually work?

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us