The Importance of Individual Mobility

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Local and long-distance public transport was reduced and suspended in many places in the wake of the pandemic, on top of that it is also considered to be risky due to the inevitably higher density of people. "What remains is the individual private transport, that is, the recourse to the car, motorcycle, bicycle or walking," stated EAC President Bernd Opolka in April clearly emphasizing, "Individual mobility is today more crucial than ever before. For the absolutely required mobility, such as for the journey to work, grocery shopping or seeing a doctor, there is often times no other alternative for your own car that is equally suitable and useful. You are on your own and can reduce the relatively manageable risk of infection, such as when charging or refueling, to a minimum by observing the known hygiene regulations."


This is now also reflected in some data published on Euractiv.com. In an analysis for Reuters, the online car market AutoScout24 said that the Internet search for older cars has increased significantly since the summer. The data showed, for example, that between July and September, online searches for vehicles over 20 years old increased by 80 percent in France, 77 percent in the Netherlands and 59 percent in Belgium. AutoScout24 boss Edgar Berger said that although "individual mobility" has become more important for consumers in these markets because of the pandemic, they have also become more cautious because of the economic uncertainty.


Although the important role of individual transport was confirmed during the pandemic, the increase in older cars on the roads raises both safety and environmental concerns. Older cars also mean fewer safety technologies and therefore potentially more accidents and more accidents with worse consequences. In addition, older cars also have a poorer environmental record and could jeopardize ambitious emission targets. However, according to Greenpeace activist, Sam Chetan-Welsh, the shift away from public transport is a greater environmental problem than older cars on the road, as the higher sales of new, larger sports cars have left vehicle emissions relatively unchanged anyway.

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