Commuters mainly rely on the car

Wiesbaden / Frankfurt (dpa) – For Germany’s commuters, the car remains the clear number 1 for commuting to work: two thirds of the employed (68 percent) drive by car to the company or to the office – even on shorter journeys.

Just good 13 According to the Federal Statistical Office, percent regularly used public transport such as buses, trams, underground trains in the year 2020 -Bahn or train for the way to work. Every tenth employed person regularly sits on a bicycle for the journey to work.

Little change since 2016

Im Compared to the last survey for the year 2016, the percentages of the individual modes of transport are almost unchanged – despite all appeals from climate protectors and efforts by politicians to get more people to abandon their cars .

According to the figures published on Wednesday, the trend is even going in the opposite direction: the “unbroken dominance of the car as a means of transport” is reflected in the current data on the number of vehicles from the Federal Motor Transport Authority, say the Wiesbaden-based company Statisticians say: on January 1st 2021 there were 48, 2 million cars registered in Germany and thus 14 percent more than ten years earlier (January 1 2011: 42,3 million).

trend too Second or third car

“In private households, the trend over the past ten years has apparently been towards second or third cars,” the statisticians conclude. The proportion of households that own at least one car was 2020 with 77, 4 percent similar high as 2010 (77, 6 percent). In the same period, however, the number of cars per household increased: came 2010 to 100 households 102 Cars, that’s how it was ten years later 108.

Even for short journeys, many people in Germany prefer to sit behind the wheel than on the saddle or in the bus: Almost half of all employed persons (48 percent) has according to its own information less than 10 To travel kilometers to work. For 29 percent is the way to work 10 until 25 kilometers long, 14 put percent 25 until 50 Kilometers back.

The figures from the Federal Statistical Office are based on a commuter survey carried out every four years. According to the authorities, the information for the year 2020 relates to the good 38, 9 million of the total 38, 6 million persons in employment in Germany who provided information on the Distance from home to job as well as time and means of transport to get to work.

Clogged highways, noise and exhaust fumes in cities

Expensive rents in cities on the one hand and large ones Demand for workers in metropolitan areas, on the other hand, is driving millions of rural workers to road and rail. In the vicinity of larger cities, in particular, many people sometimes take very long commutes to work. The consequences: clogged highways, overcrowded passenger trains, noise and exhaust fumes in the cities.

Germany has been striving for a “traffic turnaround” for years: fewer petrol and diesel vehicles and more electric cars, strengthening of the railways, better ones Networking of the individual means of transport. Because the transport sector has to deliver so that medium and long-term stricter climate targets can be achieved.

In order to create an incentive for a switch to climate-friendly alternatives, politicians introduced a CO2 price in transport at the beginning of the year . The result: fuel has become more expensive. In return, the commuter allowance for employees with longer journeys was increased.

CO2 price introduced in transport

The price for climate-damaging carbon dioxide (CO2) is to be introduced gradually in the coming years rise. However, there has long been a debate about whether there should be a «fuel price brake» – because millions of commuters are also millions of voters. And they should be relieved, so the Union demands. In an “immediate program” of the CDU it is said: “A higher commuter allowance should keep mobility in the countryside affordable.” The SPD wants a «mobility guarantee»: every citizen – in the city and in the country – should have a connection to public transport close to home.

Only: The expansion of buses and trains, especially in the country takes years and costs billions. In a report published at the end of August, the Association of German Transport Companies (VDV) came to the conclusion that local transport companies in Germany would be around 48 billions of euros in addition to achieve the EU climate targets.

Climate neutrality anchored in the Climate Protection Act

The Federal Government has the Germany’s path to climate neutrality anchored in the Climate Protection Act by the middle of the century. Accordingly, the emission of greenhouse gases such as CO2 in Europe’s largest economy should be up to 2030 by 65 percent compared to 1990 can be decreased until 2040 by at least 88 Percent. 2045 Germany wants to achieve climate neutrality, i.e. only emit as many greenhouse gases as can be bound again.

In order to achieve the reduction in CO2 emissions prescribed by the federal government, the VDV report suggests that the range of bus and train services in cities and rural areas would have to be expanded by a quarter. This would increase costs by 88 percent compared to 2018 by the end of the decade.

In addition, especially in large cities, there is the expansion of cycle paths and a debate about making parking space for cars more expensive. In order to achieve climate goals, the establishment of a customer-friendly and comprehensive charging station network remains an ongoing task for significantly more electric cars. Whoever after the election on 26. September the future federal government will: The traffic turnaround remains one of the great challenges.

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