The launch of Birmingham’s Clean Air Zone initiative,#BrumBreathes, on the 1st June 2021,marks a major landmark for the UK’s second largestcity. The initiative acknowledges theimportance of air quality in improving public healthand our environment. Deliveringworld-beating public transport solutions whilst encouragingpeople to embrace carbon neutralmodes of travel will be a key part of this success.At Worldline, as global enablers of Mobility-as-a-Service(MaaS) solutions along withworld-class payment systems, we are delighted to seethe initiative underway. Birmingham’sClean Air Zone is setting the example all cities andtowns should be following for air quality andpublic transport accessibility.The Clean Air Zone initiative isn’t just about reducingcarbon emissions in cities. It’s also aboutencouraging people to choose transport methods whichare more environmentally friendly.#BrumBreathes has seen the launch of a Vehicle ScrappageScheme, a Travel Credit Scheme,and major bus operators in the city cutting faresas well as ensuring contactless payments areavailable.
The West Midlands Cycle Hire scheme andelectric scooter hire have also been rolledout across the region to further encourage tap-to-hirecarbon-friendly ways of travelling aroundthe city.All these new forms of public transport have one thingin common: smart, contactless payments.Ensuring that public transport systems are easy tounderstand, access and pay for is key togetting more people to use them. As MaaS enablers,seeing more cities understanding theimportance of contactless, connected transport systemsis really exciting for us. Public transport,especially in cities, should be the de-facto choicefor getting around, but sadly decades ofunderinvestment, privatisation and limited optionshave created a culture of private transportthat is not environmentally or economically friendly.Worldline is dedicated to bringing affordable andaccessible forms of public transport withinreach of everyone, bringing benefits both for usersand the environment. Seeing schemes likethe Birmingham Clean Air Zone being launched demonstratesthat our vision is shared by localauthorities, businesses, and people who want to maketransport fairer and more accessible forallDiscussing the Clean Air Zone Initiative, Martin Howell,Transport Director at Worldline said:
“It’s fantastic to see our second city, Birmingham,adopting the Clean Air Zone initiative. Theabsolute commitment to public health and our environmentthrough improved air quality iscritical for our future and public transport has amajor role to play in delivering this progress.Worldline looks forward to seeing how Birmingham’sscheme unfolds and we are excited to seewho will be next to adopt similar stances towardsactions that bring positive progress to humanhealth, environment, economic, and social benefits.”Worldline’s vision is to increase social mobilitythrough making accessible and attractive publictransport systems available to the largest numberof people possible, actively encouragingpeople to leave their private cars behind. We believethat public transport has a crucial role toplay in decarbonisation and seeing major cities likeBirmingham adopting Clean Air ZoneInitiatives is inspiring to see. This dedication toprotecting the environment and creating cleaner,healthier air to breathe reflects a renewed focuson health following the pandemic.The UK has set ambitious carbon neutral targets suchas Net Carbon Zero by 2050, as well asceasing the sale of all new petrol and diesel poweredcars by 2030. Congestion charges andvehicle tax on high-emission vehicles will only continueto rise and create tougher restrictions.Upgrades to public transport and changing mindsetsneed to start happening now.As more cities throughout the UK and globally crackdownon carbon emissions and introduceinitiatives like Clean Air Zones, public transportwill become essential to achieve this. Worldlineis excited to support these initiatives and continuethe decarbonisation of travel while increasingthe accessibility and affordability of public transport.To find out more about Worldline and our work in MaaS,public transport and paymentsolutions, please visithttps://uk.worldline.com/en/home.html