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Tyee Poll: Is a 20% reduction in personal vehicle use by 2020 realistic for Canadian municipalities?

This week in Toronto, the international CarSharing Association holds its fifth annual conference, Shared Mobility and Transit: Partners for the 21st Century.

Vancouver-based Modo the Car Co-op, the world's first English-speaking car share, estimates that for every shared vehicle added to the grid, as many as 13 private vehicles are taken off the road, reducing kilometres driven and emissions for the region as a whole. Effectively, that means Modo's 300 vehicles will prevent 18,700 metric tons of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere this year alone.

As part of its Greenest City Action Plan, the City of Vancouver has a goal to reduce the average number of kilometres driven per resident to 20 per cent of 2007 levels by 2020.

Did you know?

  • In 2012, car-sharing organizations were operating in 27 countries on five continents, with an estimated 1,788,000 members sharing more than 43,550 vehicles. In Canada, 101,502 members shared 3,143 vehicles among 19 car-sharing organizations.
  • The first car share in Canada is also the largest. Communauto in Montreal serves more than 27,000 users with a fleet of 1,200 vehicles. Communauto recently launched a trial of the world's first 100 per cent electric one-way car-sharing fleet and will report results on September 17 at the CarSharing Association conference in Toronto.
  • Modo, formerly the Co-operative Auto Network, started in 1997 with 16 member-owners sharing two cars. Sixteen years later, more than 8,000 member-owners share 300 vehicles across seven municipalities, with hybrid-electric vehicles comprising 11 per cent of its fleet. More than 40 per cent of members reported getting rid of a private vehicle within one year of joining; 43 per cent say they would likely buy or lease a vehicle if Modo didn't exist.
  • Counter-intuitively, Modo's membership has increased since other car-share operators, including one-way car-share Car2Go, moved into the market. More than 450,000 drivers across North America are said to have signed up to try Car2Go since 2008.
  • Many car shares have roaming agreements with car shares in other cities across the globe. So if you're a member of a car share in Vancouver, you can car share in Toronto, San Francisco or even Sydney, Australia, when you visit.

Do you think Vancouver's goal of a 20 per cent reduction in car use by 2020 is achievable for all Canadian municipalities?

Which of the following best describes your daily work commute?

What would it take for you to give up your personal or company car?