Saturday, December 4, 2021

All aboard: Austrian minister takes train for climate talks

GLASSGOW, Scotland (NWN) — Unlike some of his European colleagues, Leonor Gesler arrived at the United Nations climate conference With a pure conscience.

The 27-hour journey by sleeper train from Vienna to Brussels and then Glasgow, Scotland, saved Austria’s climate minister from the kind of criticism that many VIPs faced for taking planes to a conference, which It’s all about cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

“Wherever possible I try to choose climate-friendly options,” said Gwesler, whose portfolio also includes transportation.

Since taking office last year, the Green Party politician has pushed for a revival of Europe’s once-extensive night train network, which has been greatly reduced by competition from low-budget airlines.

Gwesler said on Monday he used his stopover in Brussels to meet other European officials and spent the remaining 2,000-km (1,240-mile) journey in preparation for climate talks which are reaching their final stage this week.

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“Trains and night trains are the future of short and medium distance travel in Europe,” she said.

Gwesler also recently launched a nationwide ‘climate ticket’ that allows Austrians to take any form of public transport for 1,095 euros ($1,269) per year – or 3 euros ($3.50) a day the length of the Alpine nation. and allows the width to travel.

Nearly 13,000 people have bought climate tickets in the past few weeks, beating the government’s best hopes.

Gesler said it is everyone’s personal preference to decide how they want to travel.

“But I became a politician to make it easier for people in our society to move forward in a climate-friendly way,” she said.

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