Mexico City Metrobus Wins Prestigious Environmental Award From Harvard University

Metrobus is a Cornerstone of Mexico City's Widely-Recognized Climate Action Plan

Nov 12, 2009, 08:44 ET from Gobierno del Distrito Federal

MEXICO CITY, Nov. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- The Mexico City Metrobus will today receive the 2009 Roy Family Award for Environmental Partnership from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. The Mexico City Metrobus is a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system that has significantly reduced air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions in the world's second largest city. Mexico City Mayor Marcelo Ebrard will be among the recipients of the award and will discuss the success of the Metrobus and the city's comprehensive Climate Action Plan at Harvard University today.

"It is a great honor to receive this award in recognition of this partnership's efforts to design and implement Metrobus, a critical transportation system that continues to reduce pollution and greenhouse gas emissions and improve the quality of life for Mexico City residents," said Mexico City Mayor Marcelo Ebrard. "Ours is an excellent example of how public-private partnerships can result in innovative environmental solutions. We hope that Mexico City will inspire other cities around the world to embrace environmentally-sustainable programs."

This award is presented bi-annually and recognizes an outstanding public-private partnership project that enhances environmental quality through the use of novel and creative approaches. The Mexico City Metrobus, which carries 450,000 passengers per day, is the result of a successful collaboration among several public and private institutions including the Government of Mexico City, EMBARQ (The World Resources Institute Center for Sustainable Transport) and CEIBA (a Mexican NGO). Support includes funding from the Shell Foundation, Caterpillar Foundation, William & Flora Hewlett Foundation and the World Bank.

By introducing buses that operate on clean-burning ultra low sulfur diesel fuel and convincing many commuters to leave their cars at home, the Metrobus system has reduced carbon dioxide emissions from Mexico City traffic by an estimated 80,000 tons per year. In addition, due to the expansion of the system, a total of 839 polluting mini-buses have been permanently removed from the roads. New Metrobus corridors are planned and will expand the system to ten corridors by 2012.

The Metrobus system is part of Mexico City's Climate Action Plan, which is focused on making Mexico City the most environmentally-conscious and sustainable city in the world. The 15-year plan is designed to reduce transportation-related emissions; conserve public lands through major reforestation projects; encourage businesses to adopt sustainable environmental practices; invest in critical environmental infrastructure such as water management systems and recycling centers; and implement reforms regarding the disposal of solid waste.

"With more than half of the world's population living in urban areas for the first time in history, urban centers such as Mexico City must be at the front line of global climate change," said Mayor Ebrard. "Mexico City's Climate Action Plan, which aims to reduce the city's greenhouse gas emissions by 7 million tons between 2008 and 2012, is our roadmap to do just that."

Mexico City, which is an active member of C40 Cities - Climate Leadership Group, a group of world cities promoting action and cooperation on reducing Greenhouse gas emissions, is investing more than $1 billion on environmental-related infrastructure and implementing sustainable environmental programs and practices. Mayor Ebrard will participate in the Climate Summit for Mayors taking place at the COP-15 Conference in Copenhagen in December 2009.

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SOURCE Gobierno del Distrito Federal