Valencia, September 22 (EFE).- The mayor of Valencia, Joan Ribó, and the mayor of Barcelona, Ada Colau, have demanded from the state a “solution” to the problems of the Cercanías trains and to Mediterranean Corridor linking both Mediterranean cities because, they have said, if they are not fixed “no public transport is possible”.
This was noted by Ribó and Colau during their participation in a debate on the main future challenges of these two cities, organized by elDiario.es on its tenth anniversary, in which they agreed on the need to build cities for “people”, where mobility is democratized and there is more green.
Both have argued for sustainable transport and for people to use more public transport, walking or cycling, but for this, Ribó said, we must “ask the state to fix the neighborhoods, otherwise there is no way public transport”.
Colau also favors a “sharp” reduction in the private vehicle, as most of the cars circulating in Barcelona come from outside, while pointing out that “they haven’t done their homework with Cercanías either”.
He has criticized that the journey from Barcelona to Valencia, which is 350 kilometers, took three and a half hours, while it takes less than three hours to complete the 600 kilometers that separate Barcelona from Madrid.
“That senseless radial centralism must now end and the Mediterranean Corridor must be ready,” said Colau, who lamented that “they are not dissolving Cercanías or the Corridor, which are essential to reduce emissions, and come to prevent the expansion.” From the airport. That’s from the last century.”
He has also criticized the fact that the proposed expansion of the airport would destroy a natural passage area for birds on the migratory route. “They say it’s an extension of the green airport and zero emissions, don’t treat me like a fool.”
Ribó recalled that the Consell Metropolitá de l’Horta, which managed the metropolitan area, was dissolved by the PP, and without this metropolitan mobility project, people who travel to their businesses outside the municipal area do that in their car and alone and, with regard to to the extension of the port of Valencia to the north, has insisted on the need for a new environmental impact study
CITIES FOR PEOPLE
According to Colau, cities “can have many things, but if there aren’t people, they’re dystopian scenarios,” and he believes they should be designed in such a way that people “live in them the best they can and in recent decades that has been lost.” gone and the circulation of the cars has taken up most of the space”.
“What is certainly not feasible is that cities are made of cement, polluting, noisy, unhealthy, where it is increasingly difficult to imagine that children can grow up as healthy and happy as possible, play in the streets and develop as free people. in health. ”, confirmed Colau.
He considers it a “spatial injustice” that in Barcelona 25% of journeys are made by car, but that they occupy 65% of public space, stressing that people “should be the protagonists of public space” and that “happens to restore a lot of greenery so that they are not unbreathable”.
Ribó, for his part, recalled that from the beginning of his mandate at the head of the city council, ensuring sustainable mobility was a “fundamental issue” and emphasized the importance of putting health at the center of “our reflections and actions” .
“The issue of climate change is already believed by Mr Rajoy’s cousin, everyone believes it and it is something that needs to be answered” and for this reason they have proposed that Valencia become one of the hundred climate neutral cities by 2030. “We are more vulnerable than we thought and we need to work to increase the resilience of cities to climate change.”
Both mayors also agree on the need to promote renewable energy sources. Colau pointed out that energy advice points have been set up in Barcelona and that since its launch in 2015, some 100,000 residents have been helped and more than 60,000 power cuts have been avoided, advising and helping negotiate with businesses.
In addition, renewable energy sources have been promoted with solar panels in public buildings and subsidizing private individuals, and a public marketer has been established, “Barcelona energy”, which buys and distributes 100% green energy, and all public lighting is renewable. “It now works better than the existing oligopoly.”
According to Ribó, we need to move from using oil-based electricity to using renewable energy. “We are not committed to lowering taxes on the rich, let it be clear, we are committed to lowering the IBI for those people who introduce photovoltaic panels into their buildings because it lowers electricity bills and contributes to the reducing the impact of greenhouse gases”.