European Mobility Week – Encouraging the Utilisation of Sustainable Mobility
This week marked European Mobility Week, the European Commission’s flagship campaign to raise awareness and prompt action on sustainable urban mobility. With transport accounting for a third of the UK’s CO2 emissions [Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit, 2021] and representing the largest contributor to our Scope 1 and 2 business emissions at Bouygues Energies & Services (Bouygues E&S), there’s never been a better time to rethink how we travel.
At Bouygues E&S, we place sustainability at the heart of everything we do, and promote sustainable forms of travel to our employees. This includes helping our employees choose the most sustainable travel option. While we work towards banning domestic air travel within our company, our business travel app already prioritises train travel options for those booking travel for work, and, where air travel is unavoidable, ranks flights by the kilograms of CO2 emissions to help our employees make sustainable choices.
We also encourage our employees to consider making their commutes as sustainable as possible. While driving to work may be convenient, road travel accounts for over 70% of travel emissions [European Commission, 2022]. Public transport, particularly rail or hydrogen-fuelled buses, offer a less polluting route to work. Yet alongside offering a season ticket loan to help promote this choice to our employees, Bouygues E&S is aiming even higher: encouraging as many of our employees as possible to cycle to work where feasible.
The reason is simple: cycling is one of the most sustainable modes of travel. Julie Hermann, Senior L&D advisor at Bouygues E&S and founder of our employee-led sustainability focused Green Network, has always embraced carbon-neutral transport. Julie lives a car-free life and uses cycling as her main form of transport, recently going a step beyond the humble bicycle and investing in a cargo bike to accommodate her growing family.
"As my daughter grew up, she no longer fitted in mine and my partner’s bike child seats, so we investigated a cargo bike to carry on travelling around as a family and with bulky items. So far, my daughter loves it! She likes to play music and sing along while we cycle, and it’s so comfortable for her - she even naps in it. I’d definitely recommend it – cars are a major source of CO2 emissions and of air pollution, which is linked to a number of health issues including asthma and dementia. Cargo bikes are a great way to get around while minimising your carbon footprint and keeping yourself and others healthy."
As well as improved sustainability credentials, cycling offers a host of other benefits. Peter Galley, Contract Director at Bouygues E&S, has dipped his toe into the world of cycling through the hire bikes available across London and discovered:
“For me, hiring a bike to work is actually faster than the tube and much less hassle. I don’t have to change tubes, or store my bike anywhere once I get in. It’s also cheaper, and you get all the benefits of the exercise, the sights, and the fresh air!"
With sustainability and the wellbeing of our employees being a top priority for Bouygues E&S, we embody this by offering our employees an interest-free bike purchase loan. This enables employees to spread the cost of a bike purchase across multiple pay checks, making road bikes and the associated safety equipment more affordable to all.
“I recently took advantage of the bike loan offered by Bouygues E&S. The process was really easy, and I now have the best of both worlds with a folding bike: perfect for cycling in the morning and packing up for the tube in the evening if I need to travel further than expected.” Simon Hayman, Regional Director at Bouygues E&S, said.
We’re thrilled that Simon has been able to put the loan to good use, and we know that him, Peter, and Julie are already inspiring others to dust off their bike helmets.
European Mobility week offers all of us the chance to progress towards sustainable mobility and now is the perfect time to consider alternative methods of getting out and about. There is no doubt that cycling is one of the best ways to reduce the carbon footprint of your commute and that of the transport sector’s. Alongside the flexibility, affordability, and wellbeing benefits it offers; we’re proud of our ongoing commitment to promoting, encouraging and facilitating sustainable mobility within the business and for our people.
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