Car sharing schemes do not automatically lead to a reduction in greenhouse gas emission, according to research by a Belgian institute.
Such schemes “result in environmental advantages only when they are introduced to replace car possession. This is not the case today,” the Steunpunt Circulaire Economie (KU Leuven) institute concluded after polling 2,000 drivers in Flanders. The results were published on Friday by De Morgen and Het Laatste Nieuws.
Shared cars could even have the opposite effect to making the planet greener: 60% of users questioned see the scheme as an extra mobility option, which does not lead them to reduce their car usage. Furthermore, seven out of 10 of those polled say they get into a shared car for reasons of speed of travel when compared to public transport.
The researchers’ message to the authorities is to avoid promoting such sharing schemes too much.
“They result in environmental advantages only when they are introduced to replace car possession and that is not the case today,” according to the researcher Luc Alaerts (KU Leuven).