Encouraging combined road and rail transport in the EU.
Europe's roads are saturated, and the problem is getting worse across the continent. One of the main reasons is the huge quantity of goods carried by trucks, yet road freight volumes keep rising. It's estimated that the quantity of goods carried by road will increase by 20 Billion tonne-kilometres a year between now and 2013. The EU's Marco Polo II programme wants to buck this trend, and is already ensuring that over 42 billion tonne-kilometers will be shifted from the road to alternative forms of transport. This would be the equivalent of half a billion trucks per year travelling between Paris and Berlin, and in turn could mean environmental, social and economic benefits for Europe worth nearly a billion euros. The change would be made by shifting freight away from roads to other forms of transport like maritime shipping, inland waterways and railways. This film features projects that aim to transfer freight from road to rail transport, but also illustrates how the programme works as a whole.
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