Towards greener business travel

Increasingly, organisations are setting environmental requirements on the leased and company cars used for business travel. Until now, though, private cars used for this purpose have been ignored in these efforts. At the request of Mobility Mixx, CE Delft has estimated the current environmental impact of business-related kilometres driven in private cars and the emission cuts potentially achievable with two specific measures:

– Indexing of the untaxed business travel allowance to vehicle fuel efficiency.
– Application of the services of Mobility Mixx to all business kilometres.

Private cars account for a major share of the business kilometres driven in the Netherlands: around 58%. Their contribution to pollution is consequently substantial: approx. 48% of PM10 emissions, 61% of NOx emissions and 58% of CO2 emissions. This represents around 8% of the aggregate emissions of the Dutch passenger car fleet. The first measure considered was differentiation of the untaxed business travel allowance, with the allowance for highly efficient vehicles being raised by € 0.11 to € 0.30 per kilometre and that for other vehicles lowered by € 0.04 to € 0.15 per kilometre. This measure will lead to an emissions reduction of approx. 2%. The second measure is to employ the services of Mobility Mixx for all the business kilometres driven in the Netherlands, which in concrete terms means private car use being superseded by use of (clean and fuel-efficient) cars from vehicle pools and/or by rail transport. This will lead to a maximum emissions reduction of 70 to 80%. This calculation does not include any transport before or after rail journeys. By deploying dedicated measures, the emissions associated with business use of private cars can be substantially reduced. Individual organisations have a key role to play here, for they can exert a very direct influence on employees, via the travel costs they reimburse, for example. They can provide their employees attractive alternatives, moreover, encouraging them to leave their own car at home.